The big news today is that Denver Hume has signed a new two-year contract. Hume said: “I’m really happy to sign a new contract at the club. I have absolutely loved my time here and it’s been a massive part of my life for 12 years, so to have the opportunity to continue playing my football here is something I won’t take for granted. The manager and his staff have been brilliant with me and now everything’s signed, I can’t wait to kick on and play as many games as I can to help take the club back where it belongs.”
Jack Ross added: “Denver’s progression over the course of the campaign has impressed all of us, so I’m delighted that he has committed his future to the club. From day one of pre-season he has worked hard and bought into what we are trying to do, and after missing a sizeable amount of the season due to a frustrating injury, he deserves immense credit for fighting his way back into contention. I believe he can play an important role for this football club moving forward.”
Jack Ross has also been previewing the Pompey game: “The lads will be ready to go on Saturday because we have got another big game," he said. "We came into this block of five games looking to win every single one. We knew if we did that then it would take us to where we wanted. Unfortunately, we’ve dropped two on the road and now it’s been taken out of our hands. All we can do is win our remaining three and see where it takes us."
Ross also discussed speculation linking him to the Scotland manager’s job: “I’m aware there’s a huge amount of speculation with all managerial jobs now. I spoke last week about how much I enjoy the job here and how much I have to go to have done the job properly. As you can imagine, my focus has very much been on trying to lift the players from Monday and prepare properly for this weekend’s game. There is a lot to enjoy about the build-up and the game itself, but the only way we will enjoy it is if we win.
On Aiden McGeady’s injury: “Once we understood there was a chance of Aiden McGeady playing, that changes the dialogue. His contribution has still been good. It is a trade-off. If there was a significant deterioration, we’d change our thoughts.”
On his squad: “The players have shown their character countless times and they will show it again; I have no concerns on that front. The atmosphere should bring out the best in players.”
On injuries: “We’re edging back to a fully-fit squad and Duncan Watmore remains the only one that is out, but there are quite a few that have only just returned to training this week.”
Jack Ross on SAFC's motivation: “They don’t need any. No [the players don’t need a lift] because of how the games this season have been against them and the crowd that is going to be in the stadium, because of the significance of the game for both teams. Barnsley won again [on Monday], Portsmouth don’t have any margin for error either really as well, I think that will suit us, it will be a good game. We have to make sure we win every game, starting on Saturday. The last thing you want to do is somebody else slip up and you haven’t taken advantage of it.”