Awford: Don’t expect deadline-day mayhem

Paul Robinson. Picture: Joe Pepler
Paul Robinson. Picture: Joe Pepler

Andy Awford has predicted a quiet transfer deadline day for Pompey.

The Blues boss believes he has completed his business after extending the loan stay for Millwall centre-back Paul Robinson until January 5.

But ahead of today’s League Two showdown with Newport County, Awford insists that was the only deal that was in the pipeline.

And unless a quality addition becomes unexpectedly available, Awford remains happy with his squad ahead of Monday’s 11pm deadline.

He said: ‘We have done a lot of business over the summer.

‘The squad isn’t thin in terms of quality and numbers, so I’m happy with it.

‘If one becomes available that I think will improve us and is within budget, then we would look at that.

‘The phone hasn’t stopped.Agents have been ringing me up left, right and centre.

‘But we have got the squad and I’m happy with that.

‘At the moment, I wouldn’t envisage any activity in terms of anyone coming in.

‘In the past, deadline day has been mayhem.

‘As a Premier League club back in the day when I was chief scout, you are constantly trying to keep up to date with everything.

‘There might be the odd one that surprises us but I don’t expect a flurry of activity.’

Awford also denied there has been any approaches for any of his players.

He said: ‘I haven’t had a phone call and neither has Mark Catlin about anyone going out.

‘Of course, something might happen this weekend at a game where someone gets injured or a team gets beaten and feel they need a player, so you can never rule it out.

‘Personally, I would have made contact by now if I was a manager looking to sign someone before the deadline. I would be teeing things up.

‘But I’m inexperienced at that. It’s my first transfer deadline day as a manager.

‘What other managers do, I don’t know.

‘But if I wanted to sign a player, why wait? Someone else might get in there and nick him.’

At Pompey’s level, it’s unlikely a big offer will come in from a Premier League or Championship club.

It’s more likely there would be an approach to take a player on loan from another club – and the emergency loan window re-opens a week after the transfer deadline.

But Awford is delighted to have secured Robinson, who has made a big impact since his arrival.

The Blues boss said: ‘We’re delighted to have got him until January.

‘He’s a senior pro, he has been around the block and he knows what he’s doing.

‘He’s a good egg and he’s an experienced professional who looks after himself well.

‘He has been excellent with the young players as well.

‘We needed a good, older head in the dressing room.

‘We are thankful to Millwall for letting us keep him here.’