Defender set to stay with Blues

Marcos Painter. Picture: Joe Pepler
Marcos Painter. Picture: Joe Pepler

POMPEY will offer Marcos Painter the chance to recover from his injury nightmare.

The Blues will give the left-back the opportunity to make a comeback from his knee injury at Fratton Park.

That’s despite the 27-year-old being told he would not have his contract renewed last Friday.

Painter was one of nine players released by Andy Awford after the Blues announced their retained players’ list.

The 27-year-old has not played since the 5-1 defeat at Scunthorpe in February, after being sidelined with a anterior cruciate ligament injury.

That put an end to a stop-start campaign for the man who arrived in August after leaving Brighton.

Painter made 18 appearances after being signed by Guy Whittingham, but is now still battling for fitness.

Blues boss Andy Awford feels he owes it to Painter to give him the chance to do that at Pompey.

Awford said: ‘Marcos is injured.

‘What I’ve said to him is his contract expires on June 30 and we won’t be renewing it.

‘But we will keep him in house until he is physically fit enough to play football.

‘I think morally we have an obligation to look after him. We have to get him fit.

‘So he will stay, but he won’t be paid from June 30 when his contract expires.

‘If he wants to stay on after that unpaid under our physiotherapy department until he’s fit to go on trial at other clubs, we will offer him that.’

Awford intends to offer the same chance to Portsmouth-born defender Josh Warren, who was released after a lengthy spell out injured.

He said: ‘It’s the same with Josh.

‘He’s got a bad knee as well so the pair of them have been told they can stay on.’