Portsmouth have beaten fellow League One side Doncaster Rovers to the signing of 27-year-old centre-back Paul Downing, who heads to Fratton Park on a free transfer upon the expiry of his contract with Blackburn Rovers.

It was confirmed at the end of the season that Paul Downing would not be having his contract with Championship side Blackburn Rovers extended this summer, leaving him free to find a new club on a free transfer.

We reported here on The72 that Doncaster Rovers – who took Downing on loan for the second half of the season – were among the sides interested in the defender before Portsmouth entered the race to try and sign the former West Brom youngster.

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Now, it has been confirmed on Portsmouth’s official club website that Downing has made the move to Fratton Park, putting pen to paper on a three-year deal. Downing’s arrival follows the departure of star man Matt Clarke, who had a move to Premier League side Brighton and Hove Albion also confirmed on Friday afternoon.

Speaking to the club website, Downing gave Pompey a hint of what is to come from him, saying:

“I like to think I can pick a pass and play the ball forward with a bit of quality, although the most important thing as a defender is to keep it out of the net.

“You need to make sure you’re hard to beat and we’ll be looking to keep as many clean sheets as possible.”

Downing was one of two Portsmouth signings to be confirmed on Friday. with striker Ellis Harrison also joining the club from fellow League One side Ipswich Town.

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Writer for The72 and currently studying at the University of Lincoln. Based in Peterborough/ Lincoln and often writing about Peterborough United amongst other Championship and League One clubs.