Pompey close in on goalkeeping coach

Michael Poke and Paul Jones during training. Picture: Sarah Standing (141940-3027)
Michael Poke and Paul Jones during training. Picture: Sarah Standing (141940-3027)

Andy Awford is turning to a stand-in goalkeeping coach ahead of an anticipated appointment next week.

The Blues boss has spent the summer searching for the right man to help Paul Jones and Michael Poke.

Academy goalkeeping coach Scott Bevan has been helping out on a temporary basis.

But his Hawks commitments have kept him away from the Five Lakes training camp.

With Poke injured, that has left Jones and 16-year-old Alex Bass putting each other through their paces.

But today will see the arrival of a fill-in coach to take charge of the goalkeeping pool over the next two days.

And Awford is hopeful next week he will finally be able to unveil a permanent goalkeeping coach for Pompey.

He said: ‘I have got a goalkeeping coach coming in today and tomorrow to work with the goalkeepers and he is a stand-in.

‘As our goalkeepers obviously need some work on those days it made sense getting somebody to fill-in.

‘I don’t want to say his name but I have got someone coming in who I know and trust and is a very good goalkeeping coach.

‘And it’s not Alan Knight!

‘Then next week I am hoping the new guy will start. It has been a case of finding the right person and I am hopeful we are nearly there.’

Knight, Dave Coles, Phil Smith and Anthony Williams all served as goalkeeping coaches last season.

Pompey legend Knight is now an ambassador at the club, while Coles is with Steve Cotterill at Bristol City.

Smith, who was released by the Blues in the summer, has signed for Aldershot as a player and Williams is presently without a club following his dismissal along with Richie Barker in March.

At the end of last season, Smith, along with Trevor Carson and John Sullivan, took turns to help out in the ongoing coaching absence.

Meanwhile, Bass 
could again feature for Pompey at Ebbsfleet on Saturday.

Poke is responding well to treatment on the ankle he turned in training on Friday last week but the friendly may be too soon.

Rookie Bass has appeared as a substitute in the last two matches.