The Tommy Smith transfer saga has come to an end with the forward completing his move to Premier League side Portsmouth.

The fee is undisclosed but the Watford Observer understands the Hornets will receive £1.8m up front, a further £200,000 should Pompey remain in the Premier League this season and there is also a considerable sell-on clause.

Smith was set to sign for Reading on Tuesday after agreeing personal terms and passing a medical on Monday, but an 11th-hour bid from Portsmouth on Tuesday morning saw Smith land a move back to the big time.

The Pompey deal is better for Watford as Reading were only offering £1.6m up front, £200,000 based on appearances and a further £200,000 should the Royals gain promotion to the Premiership.

Reading’s decision to stall over the £1.8m asking price has backfired horrendously and they were left embarrassed on Tuesday afternoon when Smith failed to show up at the Madejski Stadium, after the Royals called a press conference to unveil the player.

Smith’s expected departure has dragged on for two months. Reading submitted their initial £750,000 offer, which was described as derisory by Hornets’ chairman Jimmy Russo, on July 1.

Sheffield United had a £1.8m bid accepted two days later but Smith rejected the move, which prompted Rodgers to claim that Smith had told the Reading boss he wanted to reunited with him in Berkshire.

This outraged Watford, who questioned how the Rodgers would know of Smith’s plans considering the Royals had not been given permission to speak to the forward.

The Hornets opted against reporting Reading to the Football League and continued negotiations but the next offer was still well below the asking price at £1.2m.

A final ‘take-it-or-leave-it’ bid was submitted by Reading and despite their claims, it failed to match Watford’s evaluation.

On Sunday, Russo released a statement confirming Reading had pulled out of the race to sign Smith, with Newcastle joining Portsmouth in enquiring about the 29-year-old.

However, on Monday the two clubs agreed a fee and Smith was set to be a Reading player, only for Pompey to come in at the death.