Portsmouth appoint Andy Awford as full-time manager

Andy Awford

Portsmouth have appointed Andy Awford as their full-time manager after a successful spell as caretaker boss.

The 41-year-old met with the board on Thursday last week and has now agreed a one-year rolling contract to take over.

Ex-academy boss Awford replaced Richie Barker on 27 March and won five out of six games, with the other drawn, to steer Pompey to League Two safety.

"It is with huge pride that I am delighted to accept the board's offer to be the new manager," said Awford.

He had previously taken charge as caretaker when Guy Whittingham was sacked in November 2013.

Awford, a former defender at Pompey, was also once the youngest ever player in the FA Cup, at just 15 years and 88 days old, while at Worcester City.

He made over 300 appearances for Portsmouth and has held several roles at Fratton Park, including chief scout and reserve-team manager.

He will become their third full-time manager in the past six months.

"I have accepted the offer as I feel the club is, after a year of laying strong financial foundations, now in a position to look ahead, move forward, go from strength to strength and achieve the stability it craves," he added.

"I genuinely believe that the club is now ready to progress and the opportunity to lead it is a challenge that I relish and am absolutely committed to.

"The rebuild won't be quick and simple, as unfortunately we are still hindered by the recent past, but the board have assured me that brick-by-brick, day-by-day, month-by-month, year-by-year, we will continue the good work that has been done this season and build a football club that we can all be very proud of for years to come."

Awford added that he was "honoured, excited and thrilled" to be named Pompey manager and urged everyone at the supporter-owned club to stick together to help win promotion from League Two next season.

"In my opinion, the only way we can achieve this is by all of us - the board, the staff, the players, the fans, the city - being united and maintaining the 'Pompey Spirit' that I know is unbreakable," he said.

"The city must smile and when Pompey is happy this city most definitely smiles.

"The opportunity to manage this football club is one I am extremely grateful for and it allows me to achieve another personal football ambition."