Craddock to end Pompey first-team wait

Tom Craddock, right, and Johnny Ertl in pre-season training Picture: Colin Farmery
Tom Craddock, right, and Johnny Ertl in pre-season training Picture: Colin Farmery
Conor Chaplin has scored three times in 19 appearances for Pompey this season

Pompey fans debate Chaplin role against Bury

  • Craddock made his last Pompey first-team appearance on November 26, 2013
  • Striker scored once in 11 matches before career-threatening injury
0
Have your say

TOM CRADDOCK will tomorrow represent Pompey’s first team for the first time in more than 19 months.

The striker is pencilled in to feature for the Blues in their pre-season friendly opener at the Hawks.

Tom has a future, whether that future is here or somewhere else remains to be seen

Paul Cook

The 28-year-old has been training with Paul Cook’s squad after recovering from the knee injury which threatened his career.

Joining him attempting to win a Fratton Park deal is ex-Derby man Ben Davies, who has spent the week with the club.

And for Craddock, the Westleigh Park fixture represents a maiden first-team outing since November 2013 at home to Southend.

Cook said: ‘Tom will be involved and is doing really well.

‘He is going to be a bit more long-term for anybody, but I think he will be really pleased with how we have treated him since he came back.

‘I have spoken to Tom and, I don’t mind saying, it’s about getting people to come and watch him.

‘Any minutes he can get for our club is good for Tom as well.

‘He has a future, whether that future is here or somewhere else remains to be seen.

‘At least by playing some minutes and some game time, if other people are watching as well then there is a chance for him.’

Pompey will tomorrow be without new signings Adam Barton and Adam McGurk.

Central-midfielder Barton has a groin problem, while McGurk has been hampered by a thigh complaint.

The duo will not be considered as a precaution, with their knocks not rated as too serious.

They will join Jack Whatmough on the sidelines as he maintains his progress from a cruciate knee ligament injury.

However, summer recruits Kyle Bennett, Christian Burgess, Michael Doyle, Jayden Stockley, Enda Stevens, Kal Naismith and Gary Roberts will all figure.

It remains to be seen whether midfielders Johnny Ertl and James Dunne will feature with their futures still very much clouded in doubt.

Cook added: ‘The likelihood is we won’t see Adam Barton or Adam McGurk tomorrow.

‘They are touch-and-go to play, but their absence will be more precautionary.

‘But, to be fair to them, they don’t want to be missing minutes on the pitch because that will put you down the pecking order – and that’s the way I believe football clubs should be.’