Former Tottenham man should start in Portsmouth midfielder at AccringtonÂ

Anton Walkes should replace Tom Naylor in midfield for Pompey's trip to Accrington Stanley tomorrow.Â

Friday, 26th October 2018, 5:43 pm
Updated Friday, 26th October 2018, 6:50 pm
Anton Walkes. Picture: Joe Pepler

That is the verdict of sports writer Will Rooney, who feels the former Spurs man is the best candidate to move into Kenny Jackett's engine room.

Naylor is absent for the trip to the Crown Stadium after collecting his fifth League One booking of the season in Tuesday's 2-2 draw with Burton.

The Blues are also without Dion Donohue, who is sidelined for up to four weeks after picking up a hamstring injury against the Brewers.

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Anton Walkes. Picture: Joe Pepler

Gareth Evans replaced Donohue on 28 minutes and took up the No10 role, prompting Ben Thompson to drop deeper in midfielder.

In the latest edition of Pompey Talk, Rooney feels Jackett will roll out a similar system to how Pompey ended against Burton, meaning there's a berth in the middle of the park up for grabs.

Ben Close and Danny Rose are options for the Pompey boss '“ but Rooney feels the mantle should be handed to Walkes.

He said: '˜When Dion Donohue came off on Tuesday night, Ben Thompson dropped deeper and Gareth Evans came into the No10 role.

'˜That will probably happen again '“ I don't see any reason why Jackett won't continue with that.

'˜It's then a matter of who partners Thompson.

'˜I think it's a three-way battle between Ben Close, Danny Rose and Anton Walkes.

'˜Personally, I would put Walkes in as I think it's his best position.

'˜When he was on loan at Pompey last season, he did well.

'˜I thought why Jackett signed him permanently was because he impressed in the period when he screened the defence.

'˜Pompey won 1-0 at Walsall last season. Walkes' role that day was to mark Erhun Oztumer and he did it immaculately.

'˜Three days later Wigan arrived at Fratton Park. Nick Powell ran amok against every team in the division last season, was linked with a move to Brighton and is doing well in the Championship.

'˜However, he didn't do at Fratton Park because, again, Walkes stuck to him closely.

'˜The one question is Accrington play on a 4-4-2 and do they have that same sort of player in the No10 who floats around and is the conduit between midfield and attack?

'˜That possibly might rule Walkes out.'

Watch the full episode of Pompey Talk on the video above