Hart confident Portsmouth can attract top kids

Portsmouth academy chief Paul Hart says it's becoming an easier sell to the region's top prospects that they can have a successful career with the Blues.

Hart told the Portsmouth News: "We're battling the likes of Arsenal coming into our area, Southampton have had an Academy for many years now, Chelsea can pop into our area. If we have a player good enough in our area then we will be battling against those people and they've got Academy status, they've had it for a long while and have got these fantastic facilities as well so it's difficult.

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"But we've got the dream, it's round the corner and we can sell that. We know with the quality of coaching we have that it now would be hard to resist the draw of Portsmouth. If we get it right then we will be as good as anybody so it doesn't really matter what the club is doing down the road.

"If I keep doing it the way I've dealt with other clubs all through the career I've had in youth football, if you get it right it's difficult to be usurped."

The resurrection of the youth set-up coupled with Pompey's rising Premier League stock ensures these are exciting times at Fratton Park on all levels.

And Hart believes Pompey are in a better shape than ever. He added: "Right at this moment the club's in a tremendous position.

"You look at where they are in the league, look at what Harry's done in the window in the summer and the sort of players he's brought in and we're now a very, very competitive Premier League side.

"We've got a new training ground coming, a stadium being talked about, there's a real buzz around the place.

"We are a part of that and hopefully in the next few years Portsmouth supporters will have some pride in our youth development programme."

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