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Claridge Eyes Handy

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 30/01/2001

Pompey manager Steve Claridge today formally confirmed his interest in former Scottish under 21 central defender Peter Handyside. The 26 year old Scot, whose contract expires this summer, is now free to talk to other clubs about his future.

Portsmouth have been linked with the Mariner's central defender on two occasions already this season, although Grimsby manager Lennie Lawrence dismissed the rumours at the time as "press talk", saying that he had had no formal contact with Fratton Park. Claridge now maintains that Handyside is one of the names on the Pompey boss's "wanted" list.

Speaking today Portsmouth player-manager Steve Claridge confirmed his interest in Handyside, who would be available as a Bosman player in the summer. "He is one of the players we're looking at. He's not top of the list, but he's not bottom of the list either. He's one of a number of players that we are aware of" said the Pompey manager.

Handyside missed the whole of last season through injury, but has featured 16 times this campaign, although the Scot has made only two appearances in 2001 (both against Wycombe), with Lennie Lawrence controversially favouring a Enhua/Groves central defensive combination in recent games.

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