DARREN FERGUSON and Dave Jones have joined the race to become Pompey’s next boss.
However, The News understands Nigel Adkins and Mark Warburton have ruled themselves out of the reckoning.
The Blues will this weekend sift through job applications which have poured in since Andy Awford’s exit as manager on Monday.
Leading contenders will then be debated at a prearranged board meeting next week.
No time frame to name Awford’s successor has been set, with a number of candidates currently in work and some involved in relegation and promotion shake-ups.
League One and League Two campaigns end on the weekend of May 2-3, before the two-legged play-off semi-finals kick off.
The Football League play-off finals will then take place at Wembley from May 23-25.
In the meantime, names of interested managers are continuing to be put forward to the Blues by agents and representatives.
The latest to emerge is Ferguson, who last season led Peterborough to the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
During two spells with the Posh, the 43-year-old totalled two automatic promotions and one play-off final victory.
Most recently they beat Huddersfield 3-0 at Old Trafford in May 2011 to reach the Championship through the play-offs.
Sandwiched in-between his time at Peterborough was an unsuccessful 11-month spell with Preston North End.
Ferguson left London Road in February following a poor run of results.
Another candidate of interest is Jones, who has won promotion with three different clubs.
Despite being out of the game since sacked by Sheffield Wednesday in December 2013, the 58-year-old still possesses an impressive CV.
He took Stockport County into the First Division (now the Championship) in his first job in 1996-97.
Subsequently, he spent two-and-a-half years at Southampton, before guiding Wolves into the Premier League through the play-offs.
Jones also clinched promotion with the Owls in 2011-12, having finished second in League One.
On the other hand, two candidates to have been championed by some Pompey fans will not be arriving.
It is understood Adkins, who left Reading in December 2014, is focusing on potential Championship jobs.
Meanwhile, Brentford’s Warburton is in demand and set for another Championship position this summer.