Former Portsmouth striker's words of praise for Hawks ahead of Crawley defender Emmanuel Adebowale's loan move

Defender Emmanuel Adebowale revealed how some insight from former Pompey striker and Hawks boss Lee Bradbury helped persuade him to make a loan move to Westleigh Park.

By Lewis Mason
Thursday, 12th August 2021, 5:58 pm
Former Pompey striker and Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Steve Robards SR2010033
Former Pompey striker and Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Steve Robards SR2010033

Crawley centre-back Adebowale has linked up with Paul Doswell' s side initially on a 28-day loan deal from the League Two outfit.

And the 23-year-old, who joined the Reds in January 2020, didn't have to look too far to ask for advice on what to expect during his time with the Hawks.

Currently Crawley assistant head coach Bradbury was Hawks manager for seven years before leaving the club in the summer of 2019, being replaced by present manager Doswell.

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Bradbury, 46, who achieved successive promotions but also suffered two relegations during his time at Hawks, encouraged Adebowale to make the short term switch to what he described as a ‘really good club’.

He told the young defender, who's only managed six Crawley appearances in 20 months at the club since joining from Eastbourne Borough, of the club's 'great' fanbase and how Doswell and his coaching staff could help him progress.

And Adebalowe has taken Bradbury's words on board, linking up with Hawks on loan. He said: ‘Yeah, Lee Bradbury (Crawley assistant manager), I think he was here for a good few years.

‘He said it was a really good club, especially he said the fans were great, the management team are perfect as well and they’ll help me out and teach me new things.

‘He said it’ll toughen me up, regular game time, they’re looking for centre-backs with a few injuries so it was nothing but good words from Bradders.

‘It’s been really good (settling in). I think it’s a much more experienced squad than Crawley’s in terms of the players being much older.

‘They’ve got a good bond here, a real mixture of young and old, they’ve all made me feel welcome, completely welcome, so I’ve enjoyed it a lot.’

Adebalowe could be handed his Hawks debut in Saturday's National League South curtain-raiser against Welling United at Westleigh Park.

He only trained with the rest of the squad today, but Adebalowe says he's more than ready to come in and make an immediate impact.

‘Yeah, I’m very excited, I’m very excited to get out there and get some game time for Havant,' said the Crawley defender.

‘I’m looking to get straight in and hit the ground running, first game of the season, Havant had a good pre-season, I had a good pre-season with Crawley, I’m fit so I just want to go out there and get playing straight away.’