Tuesday, January 10, 2006
Ashdown injury intensifies Schwarzer interest
Portsmouth goalkeeper Jamie Ashdown may be out for at least two more weeks after slipping a disc in his back.
The setback could intensify Pompey's interest in Middlesbrough's Mark Schwarzer who is available for around £2million - even though Sander Westerveld has conceded only two goals in three games since taking over.Westerveld, who was quoted over the weekend saying living in Hampshire was boring and claimed his amateur club in Holland was better run, was dropped after just four appearances at the start of the season.The 31-year-old was blamed for a string of blunders reminiscent of the ones that brought his Liverpool career to an end two years ago, but he kept clean sheets in 1-0 wins over Fulham and Ipswich and was impressive in the 2-1 defeat at Blackburn.Ashdown, bought from Reading at the start of last season, was thought to have damaged a hamstring during the warm-up for the game against Fulham on New Year's Eve but subsequent scans have shown up the disc problem.
Australian international Schwarzer shocked Boro by handing in a transfer request last week and was told by manager Steve McClaren he would be allowed to depart.
Pompey boss Harry Redknapp has not yet spoken to Boro but confirmed he would like to bring the 33-year-old to Fratton Park if the financial side of the deal suits his club.
The Portsmouth manager told Sky Sports: 'There is an interest there. I like him.
'He is a top keeper, no doubt about it and for sure we are certainly interested.
'Whether we could do a deal and afford him remains to be seen. But there is nothing concrete on that at the moment.'