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18 December 2014

Boss happy to move into new training base

Something was missing when Pompey were mixing it with the big-boys at the top of the Premier League.

The Blues spent plenty on players, while infrastructure was neglected.

Facilities were not considered as important as multi-million pound signings, with training pitches instead rented from a school in Eastleigh.

But the squad and coaching staff have now fully moved into their new base in Copnor.

And Andy Awford is delighted that Pompey finally have a training ground that they can call home.

The Blues boss said: “We’ve been training here for a couple of weeks, but we permanently moved in on Wednesday.

“It’s been nice to use the new pitches, although we must thank the University of Portsmouth for allowing us to stay on there for longer than we originally intended.

“There are still a few issues to sort out – like any time you move house – but it’s great to be here and to have our own home. We’ve never had that before, so well done to everybody involved.

“It’s been a huge effort from everyone and no matter what happens going forward, this club now has its own training ground.

“Gary Waddock has come in and can’t believe that a club at this level has a facility like we do.

“That’s something we can all be proud of. It’s not what Manchester City or Arsenal have – but it’s ours.”

Pompey will hope to recover from back-to-back defeats when they visit 18th-placed Cheltenham on Saturday.

Awford said: “Paul Hardyman went to watch them recently when we had a free weekend and they lost to Dover in the FA Cup.

“They’ll be looking for a fast opening against us because we haven’t started well and that’s something we have to be conscious of.

“We certainly have to be brighter from the start than we have been recently – we need to stay in the game.”

Pompey are 7/4 with Sky Bet to beat Cheltenham. Bet at www.skybet.com/pompey and you could win £250,000 for the club from the Sky Bet Transfer Fund.

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