By Site reporter
Thursday 04 Sep 2008 09:27:00
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Nadir Belhadj will provide great cover down Pompey's left hand side and allow youngster Armand Traore the chance to develop at his own pace.

Algeria international Belhadj signed on the deadline from Lens and he is more than familiar with the left hand side, both in midfield and defence.

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'Belhadj is a left-sided player. He can be a left-back, he can be a left wing-back, and we need good players like that,' REdknapp told The News.

'I know what he can offer us. I've seen him a few times and so has Tony Adams and our head of scouting Ian Broomfield.

'We've all liked what we have seen. He's the same type of player as Traore. He's got pace, has good ability and is a very good player.

'I see him giving us an alternative in that left wing-back role. Before there was no-one really at the club who could do it apart from Armand.

Belhadj has Champions League experience with Lyon and his know-how will be invaluable as Pompey embark on a first European campaign, as Redknapp acknowledges.

'We've got a lot of games coming up, especially if we do well in Europe. There's a run where we play Saturday, midweek and then Saturday or Sunday – it's pretty heavy stuff."

'You are going to need a squad, especially with Traore. The lad's only 18. He's done terrific, but I don't want to burn him out. He's not used to it.

'It's a big ask for someone of his age to play three games every week. Now I have another good player who can go there and that's important.'

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