Grant makes shock return to Pompey

PORTSMOUTH chief executive Peter Storrie has moved to reassure manager Paul Hart that his job is safe despite yesterday confirming the sensational return of Avram Grant as director of football.<br /><br />Pompey goalkeeper David James warmly welcomed the appointment of Grant, who spent the 2006-07 season in the same role before being lured to Chelsea, where he became manager and led them to a first Champions League final.<br /><br />Hart, who is under pressure after Pompey suffered seven defeats in their first eight Premier League games, may not be so happy to have a more illustrious and high-profile coach watching over him.<br /><br />But Storrie insists Grant, whose arrival is the first significant move since Saudi businessman Ali Al-Faraj&rsquo;s takeover of the financially stricken outfit earlier this week, will not tread on Hart&rsquo;s toes.<br /><br />&ldquo;People can construe it how they like &ndash; the fact is he Grant has been brought in as a director of football and that has been made abundantly clear,&rdquo; said Storrie.<br /><br />&ldquo;He will work with Paul and do exactly the same as what he did in his last stint at the club. He will be involved in the coaching. Paul selects the team but he is missing an experienced man alongside him at the moment.&rdquo;<br /><br />Hart has been without an assistant since his No2 Brian Kidd left the post during the close season, and Storrie said Grant would help fill that gap.<br /><br />He added: &ldquo;We will have two senior people at the helm, which is only good for the club. Avram will be on the technical side and will work closely with Paul in all aspects.&rdquo;<br /><br />James, who was at Fratton Park during Grant&rsquo;s first spell, called the Israeli&rsquo;s return &ldquo;a very good move&rdquo;.<br /><br />He added: &ldquo;I love Avram, he&rsquo;s a great guy. When I first joined the club he was there and he was very active in preparation for matches. He is a very wise man; his football knowledge is immense.&rdquo;