Nigel Clough has expressed hopes that Chris Porter, the former Sheffield United centre-forward, receives a warm reception when he return to Bramall Lane this evening, writes James Shield.
Porter joined Colchester three weeks ago after failing to command a regular place in the 48-year-old’s first team squad despite signing a new contract during the close season.
But Clough, acknowledging Porter had “probably been a little bit unfortunate” not to feature on more occasions, told The Star: “I hope Chris gets a good round of applause from the fans because he scored some important goals for us.
“He was probably a little bit unfortunate not to get more of a ‘go’ recently but we’ve got other options in there which was a shame for him.
“We’ll always to and let players go if they aren’t going to be involved. There’s no need for it to be acrimonious or for any bad feeling to enter the equation.
“There is none between us and Chris whatsoever. Why would there be?
“Stephen McGinn also left here during the transfer window and I called him to wish him all the best before Dundee’s game against Celtic at the weekend.”
Porter, whose goals proved instrumental as United reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup last term, has netted twice in three appearances for Tony Hume’s side. Harrison McGahey is also set to depart, albeit on a temporary basis, while a decision will be taken on whether Diego De Girolamo can finish the season at York City. Unlike fellow academy graduate Terry Kennedy and Jamie Murphy, the Italy youth international has refused to extend his United contract.
“There’s nothing worse than seeing players sitting in the stand or seniors in the under-21’s,” Clough said. “It gets them down after a while.
“You can do it for a couple of weeks but then it does have an effect. It’s doesn’t serve a purpose for anyone so that’s why we always try and be fair to the people involved.”
“With Harrison, we want him to develop,” Clough added. “He’ll go out and he wants to go out which we’re pleased about.
“He realises that, after three months or so in League Two and with the experience gained from doing that, he’ll come back a different player.
“We brought Harrison is as ‘one for the future’ and he’s got excellent potential.”