Pompey line up Butler loan spell

Pompey youngster Dan Butler
Pompey youngster Dan Butler

Guy Whittingham is to send Dan Butler out on loan in a bid to get match action.

Pompey’s former number-one left-back didn’t even make the squad at Plymouth on Saturday.

Instead, Joe Devera was preferred in the Blues’ starting line-up, with Shaun Cooper covering from the bench.

Meanwhile, other rivals for the position, Marcos Painter and Danny East, are both currently injured.

Butler has been left out of Whittingham’s side since the second match of the season – after the Capital One Cup defeat at Bournemouth.

Since then, Pompey boss Whittingham has consistently praised the 18-year-old’s attitude and stressed he has a future at the club.

But, for the time being, the youngster is out of his immediate first-team thoughts.

Aldershot and Salisbury are among the clubs enquiring about taking Butler on a temporary basis – and Whittingham is listening.

‘Dan trains every day and has had a few development group games,’ said Whittingham.

‘But he is one of those that you want to get out on loan, probably within the next couple of weeks or so, because he needs games.

‘Just when depends on the opportunity. If the opportunity came this week, probably!

‘We have had a couple of clubs interested in Dan – one is in the Conference Premier and the other Conference South.

‘He did well in Conference South (with the Hawks) last season and we want try to get him into Conference level if we can at least.

‘There were thoughts with Dan going on loan before, but with Marcos Painter going down injured, that has delayed things.

But there have been clubs interested in him so we will see.’

Butler spent 11 matches on loan at Westleigh Park last season, earning rave reviews.

It earned him a recall to Fratton Park at the turn of the year – and he went on to be a key member of Whittingham’s set-up in League One.

The Isle of Wight teenager totalled 18 appearances during an impressive second half of the season for the side.

His eye-catching displays were rewarded with a two-year deal in the summer and he started the campaign in pole position at left-back.

Now there is fierce competition for the role, although injuries – particularly with Painter – have been a concern.

Whittingham added: ‘Marcos has picked up little knocks and is another who hasn’t really got going this season.

‘I don’t think it is a coincidence he didn’t have a proper pre-season and tried to come in and catch up. That might be the problem there.

‘You have got Danny East and Coops (Cooper) coming back from injury as well. It’s not as if all of those have been playing regularly and you know they are fully fit.

‘They are all finding their way back into 90 minutes.’