Early Pompey team news: Walkes on the move, Close and Wheeler in contention

Anton Walkes is pencilled in for a right-back return at Blackpool.

Thursday, 9th August 2018, 6:56 pm
Updated Friday, 31st August 2018, 5:29 pm
Pompey's Anton Walkes

The summer signing is ready to drop back and replace the injured Nathan Thompson for tomorrow's trip to Bloomfield Road.

Thompson was forced off after 71 minutes against Luton last Saturday with a problem with his left knee.

He was yesterday still unable to train, with Walkes the obvious replacement for the game against the Tangerines.

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Pompey's Anton Walkes

Although operating in the centre of midfield for the 1-0 victory over the Hatters, Walkes has largely served as right-back for Pompey.

Kenny Jacket must now decide who comes into midfield, while David Wheeler is in line for his Blues bow.

Ben Close is the most likely replacement for Walkes, after coming off the bench last weekend for the final 30 minutes.

Jackett was impressed with the youngster's contribution having recovered from the hamstring concern which had blighted his pre-season.

Dion Donohue is also a midfield option, although short of match fitness following glandular fever.

As a result of either's promotion, Danny Rose may receive a recall to the 18-man squad.

As for Wheeler, he is expected to join Jamal Lowe, Ronan Curtis and Brett Pitman as the attacking options in the side.

That would mean Brandon Haunstrup dropping to the bench to accommodate the former Exeter man.

Conor Chaplin is likely to be on the bench after the transfer window yesterday shut, leaving him remaining at Fratton Park.