Wellens - who returns from holiday this weekend - told the Free Press he was confident that he had secured his first signing before he headed abroad.
And Close fits the description of the player he was hopeful of landing.
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Close was offered a new contract by Portsmouth at the end of the campaign but rather than the club activating a clause for an additional 12 months, they offered a fresh deal for two years but on reduced terms.
He had been on the fringes at Fratton Park under Kenny Jackett but played ten of 12 matches under Danny Cowley who took over in March.
Born and raised in Portsmouth, Close made 190 appearances for Pompey.
He has previously worked with Rovers assistant manager Noel Hunt, who was part of the Pompey squad that beat Rovers to the League Two title in 2017.