MUSTAPHA Dumbuya has joined Rovers’ League One rivals Portsmouth on trial in a bid to land a new contract.
The speedy full back was expected to be one of those at the end of their Rovers contracts to be offered new terms – should funds have been freed up by the sale of contracted players.
However, like Simon Gillett, Dumbuya appears unwilling to wait until Rovers are in a position to act and is determined to secure his own future.
The 24-year-old is one of five triallists to join Pompey in their first week of pre-season training.
Portsmouth are in a similar situation to Rovers in needing to wipe significant amounts off their current wage bill in order to survive and attract a new buyer.
The Fratton Park club’s wage bill in reported to amount to £9.5m with Tal Ben Haim paid an estimated £36,000 per week.
Should Dumbuya impress Michael Appleton this week, he is unlikely to have a deal with Pompey confirmed as the club are still under a transfer embargo from the Football League.
Dumbuya made 41 appearances for Rovers following his signing in the summer of 2009 after rising up through non league football.
His opportunities were limited following Dean Saunders’ arrival at the club last September and he went out on loan to Crystal Palace in January.
However, Saunders had not written Dumbuya off and there was a suggestion he would be present when Rovers returned to pre-season training last week.