Pompey are finally getting somewhere in their attempts to gain international clearance for Jake Jervis.
Although the Blues are still sweating on being able to include him against Mansfield tomorrow, they have at least finally made contact with the necessary officials in Turkey to secure the paperwork that is required.
The pacy striker signed last week but has been left in limbo waiting for the green light to be able to play again because of his ill-fated spell in Turkey.
Boss Richie Barker is hopeful, however, Jervis he may yet be available for the weekend, with progress at last starting to be made.
Barker said: ‘We are not a million miles away now, I think.
‘They are only rumours I’ve heard and haven’t had anything confirmed but we are getting closer.
‘Jake looks at you every day waiting for some good news and it’s been going on for nine or 10 days.
‘He is desperate to get out and play.
‘It took us a while to get a response from Turkey. I think their working hours might be different to ours.
‘But we are getting there. We are at least getting replies now.
‘There is some light at the end of the tunnel but how long that tunnel is, I don’t know.’
There was more good news for the Blues boss with both Andy Barcham and Ricky Holmes expected to be available for the Mansfield clash, having shaken off their respective injuries.
Barcham came through 45 minutes of a development game on Tuesday, while Holmes has returned to training after suffering concussion on New Year’s Day against Southend.
Barker added: ‘Andy is back training and played half a game for the development squad and came through with no problems.
‘Ricky has done some training so we need to see how he reacts.
‘He had concussion at Southend and it was a serious thing so he has had to come back gradually.
‘It’s not just a kick on the ankle – it’s a serious thing.
‘He went to hospital when it happened but I don’t even know if he stayed overnight.
‘It has taken time to recover but we need to take it slowly and be sure he has fully recovered.’
Long-term absentee Tom Craddock remains ruled out, while Danny East is making progress from his ankle ligament injury and should be back in contention over the next week or so.
He will not have recovered in time to face Mansfield, though.
Barker said: ‘Danny is back running and doing some ball work so should be back in full training in the next week or so.’