CENTRE-BACK Lewis Whyton revealed he is considering a U-turn on his retirement after notching up his 500th Portland United appearance on Saturday.

Whyton replaced teenager Sol Roche in the 82nd minute of the Blues’ 2-0 victory at Bournemouth Poppies to reach the enormous milestone.

Despite pledging to hang up his boots due to family commitments, Whyton has made intermittent appearances this season.

And the defender, who started his glittering Portland career 15 seasons ago as a striker, admitted he is mulling over a full-time return.

He told Echosport: “I said I was retiring at the end of last season. I’ve got three young kids and a wife and I said I wasn’t going to travel as much this time.

“I haven’t totally made my mind up (on a return). I want to say yes, I just don’t know if I can commit to Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday every week.

“That’s the problem with three kids, so I’m still umming and ahhing, if I’m honest.”

On his landmark, Whyton joked: “It’s not bad is it, I suppose?” and revealed he had no idea he was on the cusp of his 500th game.

He said: “I was sat on the bench and Lyn McKechnie (programme editor and committee member) said ‘you do know you’re on 499?’.

“Then with 10 minutes to go Brendon (King, manager) said ‘you’re coming on’. I said, ‘really?’

“He went, ‘yeah, you’ve got to make your 500th appearance!”

Asked for his thoughts on his Portland career to date, Whyton said: “I’ve won the Wessex League back-to-back, about four DPLs, a couple of cups, a (Dorset) Senior Cup final.

“It’s not a bad Portland career, I would say. (Portland means) quite a lot. I’m up there most days.

“My dad (Darren, ex-captain) is groundsman and I help out dad doing the ground.

“I’m up there quite a lot at the moment, so it means a lot – always has done.”

“I’ve only ever known Portland,” the former Blues’ ball boy added. “I watched dad when I was younger and my grandad (Ken, goalkeeper) played years ago as well.”

Looking back at his stand-out memories, Whyton recalled his full debut.

“Probably my first start when I was 14, me and Ross Doidge were up front and we won 3-1 at Brockenhurst.

“Mick Greeno gave me my debut – I scored and Doidgey scored, that’s the first game I remember.

“I scored a hat-trick when I was 15 to keep Portland in the (Wessex) league, I remember that one, too. We beat Fareham away 3-2 and I scored all three.”