Portsmouth chief incites bidding war for star defender wanted by Leeds

Oli Fisher
Matt Clarke Portsmouth

Portsmouth chief executive Mark Catlin has admitted he is hoping to drive up the price of reported Leeds and Brighton target Matt Clarke.

The Sentinel claims that around half a dozen clubs are interested in a move for the 22-year-old centre-back this summer, with Stoke interested.

The 22-year-old, who featured in all of Pompey’s League One outings this season, was also part of the team that overcame Sunderland in the Checkatrade Trophy final at Wembley.

Pompey insiders have allegedly already said that the defender will likely be a Championship player next term, especially given the club failed to secure promotion, with Leeds sniffing around.

Brighton are believed to be leading the chase at the moment though, and reports have suggested that the defender carries a price tag of around £4million.

Catlin has now admitted that he is looking to drive that price up though through a bidding war, but hinted that he is willing to sell.

“If there’s a demand for any player and more than one entity wanting that, it assists in driving the price up,” he said.

“It’s like a painting. What’s the value of a player? It’s not anything that’s comparable.

“With a painting what you ideally want is multiple bidders. Then it can become a self-perpetuating upward spiral at that point. That’s what you are looking for.”


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