Ex-Pompey striker sings Chaplin’s praises

Conor Chaplin scores against the Hawks on Saturday Picture: Joe Pepler
Conor Chaplin scores against the Hawks on Saturday Picture: Joe Pepler
Matt Mayes has joined Gosport Borough on loan from Pompey Academy. Picture: Colin Farmery

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Conor Chaplin was the scourge of the Hawks to inflict a heavy Westleigh Park defeat.

Yet Lee Bradbury couldn’t help but admire the goalscoring talents of Pompey’s chief destroyer.

Chaplin bagged a 15-minute hat-trick in addition to creating Kal Naismith’s goal in Saturday’s 6-0 triumph for the Blues.

Hawks boss Bradbury is well aware of the youngster’s ability, having watched him in opposition during previous pre-season friendlies.

And, encouragingly for Pompey fans, he believes the 20-year-old is getting better and better.

Bradbury, who scored 46 goals in 167 Blues appearances, said: ‘Conor’s a great little player.

‘Being a centre-forward myself, I watch him, I watch his movement, he’s clever.

‘He’s offside, then he’s not, he’s jumping back on and then running along the line, always stretching the play. It’s intelligent movement as well as quick movement.

‘I am impressed with him and he’s got better and better.

‘I think he’s similar to Matt Tubbs. They both want to stretch the line a bit, they are intelligent and want to play and get in behind people.

‘For a centre-half that is always hard to defend.

‘Certainly, I think Tubbs playing off the target man at our level will do very well.’