AFC PORTCHESTER’S 17-year-old attacking midfielder Andy Rinomhota is on the threshold of joining Steve Clarke's Reading.

The teenager impressed on trial with the SkyBet Championship club and Portchester are hoping to thrash out a deal with the FA Cup semi-finalists this week.

Rinomhota was part of the Royals side that drew 0-0 at Winchester City on Saturday and will play again in tonight’s Sydenhams League Cup semi- final against Blackfield & Langley at Cams Alders, Fareham (7.45).

But Portchester’s director of football Mick Jenkins does not anticipate the home-grown talent being around next season.

“He’ll be with us until the end of this season but, as of July 1, I think he will be a Reading player,” he said.

“It’s great for the kid. He’s been a real find this season.

“He’s come through the system at Portchester along with Lloyd Thomas, Eliot Roberts and Joe Noakes and the funny thing is that we probably wouldn’t have come across these boys had we had our full complement of players earlier in the season.

“But Joe Bye was suspended, Andy’s come through and hopefully he’s going to get a full-time contract with a Championship club.”

Goalkeeper Thomas also went to Reading for a week and the Royals intend to monitor his progress. The 18- year-old has got his chance to impress for Portchester because Southampton-based ex-Follands keeper Jon Webb is out long-term with cruciate knee ligament damage.

It was another goalkeeper – Winchester’s Gareth Barfoot – who caught Jenkins’ eye in the goalless stalemate at Winchester.

“A draw was probably a fair result and I would have taken it before the game, but we could have been 2-0 up at the break if it hadn’t been for Gareth,” he said.

“How he managed to get to Jack Salter-Vaile’s header full-stretch and tip it away, I don’t know. He’s the reason they kept a clean sheet on the day. He kept them in the game.”

Three ex-Blackfield players will not face their old club in tonight’s Cup semi-final. Bye is unavailable and Alex Baldacchino and Sean Thurgood are injured.