Michael Smith happy to show fans his Pompey potential

Michael Smith celebrates after showing Pompey fans what he can do. Picture: Joe Pepler
Michael Smith celebrates after showing Pompey fans what he can do. Picture: Joe Pepler
Jamal Lowe Picture: Joe Pepler

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Michael Smith was happy to give the Fratton faithful a glimpse of his Pompey potential in Saturday’s impressive 3-1 win over Bristol Rovers.

And the new arrival promised Blues fans there is more to come after opening his goalscoring account at the third time of asking.

I think there is a bit of everything to my game, from hold-up play to running in behind and hopefully I managed to get that across to some of the fans on Saturday

Michael Smith

Smith signed for Paul Cook’s side on transfer deadline day earlier this month, before making his debut in the 1-1 draw at Morecambe.

A dismal 1-0 defeat to Leyton Orient followed, to hand the on-loan Swindon striker an unfavourable start to life on the south coast.

But with pressure mounting on Pompey, the 24-year-old produced an eye-catching Rovers display, crowned by his towering header on the stroke of half-time, to help lift the Blues up to fifth spot in the League Two table.

‘I just remember it being a second phase from a corner,’ said Smith.

‘The corner got cleared back out to Ben Davies again, who whipped a really good ball back into the box and I managed to get on the end of it – I was pleased to score.

‘It’s good to get that first one and I know there’s more to come from me.

‘I think there is a bit of everything to my game, from hold-up play to running in behind and hopefully I managed to get that across to some of the fans on Saturday.’

The proof 6ft 4in Smith is more than just a target man was evident in the Blues’ opening goal when he showed great awareness to fizz a crossfield pass out to Davies, resulting in Gareth Evans getting on the end of the full-back’s delivery.

And Smith insists he is happy to play in any formation for Pompey.

He said: ‘I always try to bring other people in to play and luckily it managed to come off on Saturday and Evans got himself on to the end of the move.

‘As for systems, I am comfortable whatever.

‘The manager picks the team and I am happy to play in whatever formation he wants me to play in.’

Smith was handed a start in a lone-striking role for Saturday’s visit of Rovers.

Previously he had been paired up front with Marc McNulty but at the weekend, it was McNulty who replaced him after 68 minutes.

The Scotsman’s impact was almost immediate as he also found the target with 13 minutes to go and Smith is hopeful the duo can strike up a partnership.

‘You saw Marc’s quality when he came on to the pitch on Saturday and managed to score,’ added Smith.

‘He is a goalscorer and he has done that wherever he has gone – hopefully we can strike up a partnership, we will have to see what happens.’

– JEFF MARSHMAN