Barclays Premier League

Portsmouth: Mokoena will stay

2011-06-29 16:21
Aaron Mokoena (File)
London - Portsmouth manager Steve Cotterill has told former Bafana Bafana captain Aaron Mokoena he cannot leave Fratton Park just yet.

Mokoena's advisor Dietmar Wendorff has claimed the South African has instructed him to find another club.

Cotterill however, said the 30-year-old Mokoena has yet to express his desire to leave to the Pompey boss directly. But should that be the case, Cotterill stressed the Blues would only be able to let anyone leave for a big fee right now as they currently only have 10 senior players signed on.

"Somebody rang me up and told me Aaron wanted to leave," he told The News. "Well, I have not heard anything about that - I have certainly not heard anything from him. Then his advisor has come out and denied that he wants to leave.

"I don't actually know what is going on with that. One thing for sure, though, is if anybody wants to leave we are not pinning them down to stay here, and I haven't had anybody coming up to me to say they want to leave. I'm not sure we would let anyone leave at this moment in time. That is purely down to our lack of numbers.

"But there will be a change around here. There has been a big change around after a year and probably after two years there will be a bigger change around. We can't afford to let somebody go - unless they want to pay a decent fee."

Mokoena lost his place in the heart of the Pompey defence to Ricardo Rocha in the second half of last season, while Jason Pearce has since arrived from Bournemouth and Pompey remain eager to agree another loan stint with Wolves for Greg Halford.

Despite winning 104 caps, Mokoena has also lost his place in the Bafana squad, and Cotterill has questioned Wendorff's claims that the former Blackburn man has been interesting clubs in Qatar, Russia, Turkey and Dubai.

"They are amazing these agents, I have never even heard of this one," added the Pompey boss. "I've said it before and I will say it again - a lot of these agents decide to do a bit of talking.

"The prime example was the agent of Hermann (Hreidarsson) earlier last season and then when I asked Hermann, he said he didn't know anything about it. I am pretty sure if I bothered to ask that question to Aaron he would probably give the same answer."

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