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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Aug 28, 2009

Pompey sign Brown, Dindane & Prince Boateng

Portsmouth manager Paul Hart is determined to bolster his defensive resources ahead of Tuesday's transfer deadline.

The Fratton Park club line up against big-spending Manchester City on Sunday without Sylvain Distin, who has completed his switch to Everton.

Hart has sealed deals for Watford forward Tommy Smith, Lens striker Aruna Dindane and Wigan midfielder Michael Brown, with both hoping to debut this weekend. Tottenham's Kevin Prince Boateng has also signed a three-year deal at Fratton Park.

Hart has also been linked with a raft of other recruits including Watford defender Mike Williamson, Tottenham midfielder Jamie O'Hara and Vitoria de Guimaraes striker Nuno Assis.

But the Pompey boss is particularly keen to add to his limited options at the back and is confident he will have more than enough manpower at his disposal by the start of September.

He said: "I think I will have somebody (a defender) in but not for Sunday. I'm looking to bring in two at the back but one is more definite than the other. I have to bring some players in and if we get everyone we want, it will probably be more than we require.

"But given the position we've have been in, that would be a real comfort blanket to us.''

Ivory Coast forward Dindane, 29, has joined on a season-long loan. He told the club's website: He said: "I'm friends with Didier. I spoke to him on the phone and he said I was making a great choice coming to Pompey. They've been interested in me since 2003 so I'm very happy to sign.

"My integration will be fine because there are a lot of French-speaking players in the dressing room. That's a big help for me. I've got pace and skill and I'm a creator as much as a goalscorer. I love a one-on-one with a defender and going past them.

"I feel fit and strong and I want to do well here and then help Ivory Coast do well in the World Cup next summer. The start of the season has been difficult but what matters is where we are at the end of the season. We'll be fine because we've got good players here, some of who I've already played with."

Hart has refused to play down the size of the task his charges will face in holding on to their Premier League status this year.

But he believes the likes of Brown and Smith have come to Fratton Park with a point to prove.

He said: "When Michael was at Sheffield United, I was at Nottingham Forest. We had some memorable games. He's a good player, a hard little so-and-so and there were times I felt like getting on the pitch and giving him a belt myself.

"He has vast experience and he knows his way around the pitch. He has had a lot of experience with some top clubs. I think Tommy wants to make his mark as a Premier League player and I think Michael has proved himself at this level. He probably just wants to ram it home a little bit. "Hopefully that will be a feature of the players I bring in over the next two or three days.''

Hart has been boosted by the conclusion of Pompey's protracted takeover saga, which has seen Sulaiman Al-Fahim finally purchase the club from Alexandre Gaydamak.

The Arab businessman is set to watch Sunday's clash with City from the Fratton Park directors' box.

While the former Nottingham Forest boss is hopeful he will have cash to spend in January, he knows he will have to battle for his club's Premier League future on a shoestring. He said: "It's there for everybody to see and we're trying to improve the squad within a limited budget and prove we're capable of staying in the Premiership.

"I don't think it's going to be easy by any means and there may be money available in January. The fact something is signed and sealed with regard to the ownership is of comfort to everybody. We've been waiting a long time for it and now the club can take a step forward.

"But I'm used to working with no money - that has been my career. It doesn't faze me and I'm desperate to stay in this Premier League. I'm confident the players we get, whether or not we have paid £50m for them, will add to our squad and give us a fighting chance.''

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