Guy Whittingham is adamant Trevor Carson’s goalkeeping stand-in will feature for one match only.
The Ulsterman is unable to face parent club Bury tomorrow under the standard terms of his emergency loan.
Phil Smith will get the nod ahead of John Sullivan for the clash against the Shakers at Fratton Park.
However, Whittingham was yesterday remaining tight-lipped on the matter ahead of the home fixture.
Smith impressed for Alan McLoughlin’s development group during a goalless draw with Oxford on Tuesday.
He has also been the preferred choice on the bench during Carson’s three matches for the Blues, with Sullivan not making the squads.
Whittingham yesterday informed his chosen keeper during training.
But he decided not to identify the player in his pre-match press conference.
He said: ‘The goalkeeper for Bury has been decided. They have both been told.
‘You look at the way they train, you look at their attitude, that is what you base it on.
‘They have both been great, to be honest.
‘Phil has stepped up to do a bit of the coaching but he has also made sure he has kept himself sharp.
‘And I can’t fault John Sullivan whatsoever, his attitude towards training has been fantastic.
‘Whoever comes in will be in for one game only because Trevor has come in and done very well for us, adding some confidence to the back four.
‘That’s pretty much how it is going to be – just for the one game right now.’
Meanwhile, Whittingham is still thinking of sending Dan Butler out on loan, with two clubs in the frame.
The Isle of Wight teenager featured alongside Smith and Ashley Harris in that same development group match at Furze Lane for a precious 90-minute workout.
He has not kicked a ball for the first-team since a Capital One Cup game at Bournemouth on August 6.
And it is still the manager’s intention to get him game time at Conference level.
‘I had a really good conversation with Dan yesterday,’ added Whittingham.
‘He’s a good lad, and obviously wants to get back in the team and is working really hard.
‘Sometimes you can overdo it and be too keen and I have said to him to relax a little bit “you are here for at least two years, that is how long your contract is. We want you to be an established left-back, we are going to work with you and make sure you are.”’
‘Every young kid goes through the period where they have had their taste of it and think they are doing alright.
‘There was less pressure last year than this year and he will do alright.’