Portsmouth have admitted defeat in their pursuit of Birmingham City winger Viv Solomon-Otabor, according to The News.
Pompey boss Kenny Jackett had been tracking the 23-year-old, who spent the second half of the 2018/19 campaign on loan at Fratton Park. However, Jackett is set to divert his attention elsewhere after growing tired of waiting on a decision from the winger’s camp.
Solomon-Otabor, who has also enjoyed loan spells with Bolton Wanderers and Blackpool in the past, has been offered a new deal at St. Andrew’s but has yet to commit his future to the Blues.
Although a return to Portsmouth now looks unlikely, doubts remain over his future. According to reports, the winger has turned down Birmingham’s contract offer and could leave the club he has represented as a professional since 2014.
Tipped to emulate the success of fellow Blues academy graduate Demarai Gray, injuries and a lack of first-team action have somewhat slowed the progress of a player with ambitions of representing the Nigerian national team.
Former Birmingham manager Gary Rowett could do little but wax lyrical about Solomon-Otabor when he burst on the scene, offering a glowing review of the player:
“If he can piece it all together, he’s going to be another Demarai Gray.
“He’s probably stronger than Demarai. He’s quicker than Demarai. He doesn’t take on players like Demarai, but he’s got two really good feet.
“He can smash a ball with both his left and his right, and he’s a really humble lad, who works incredibly hard.”
Although Solomon-Otabor hasn’t graced many headlines yet, he has age on his side and a fresh start this summer could help to revitalise his career.