Pearce impressed by Futacs’ arrival

Marko Futacs
Marko Futacs
Pompey striker Conor Chaplin struggles to hide his disappointment

Southend 3-1 Pompey: They said what?

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Jason Pearce has welcomed the arrival of Pompey’s new ‘beast’ of a hitman.

And the Blues defender believes Marko Futacs will soon be giving Championship defences nightmares.

The Hungarian striker sealed his arrival at Fratton Park last week following a successful trial with the club.

Futacs has impressed while training with his new team-mates, prompting Steve Cotterill to offer the 21-year-old a year’s deal with an option for a further year.

At 6ft 5in, Futacs presents an imposing figure and offers a totally different set of problems for defenders from Pompey’s other strikers.

The former Werder Bremen man joins Dave Kitson, Kanu, Erik Huseklepp, Luke Varney and Benjani as Cotterill’s attacking options.

Those players now give the Pompey boss a number of different attributes to call upon to worry the opposition.

Futacs was at Fratton Park for the weekend draw with Cardiff and trained before and after the game.

Pearce has been impressed with what he has seen of the under-21 international since he linked up with his new club.

He believes he will go on to be a useful asset for Pompey.

Pearce said: ‘He’s a beast.

‘I couldn’t believe it when I asked how old he was and he said 21.

‘He’s only a young lad so he’ll be learning as well.

‘He’s good and he’s a strong lad.

‘The coaching staff will do some work with him.

‘We’re all hoping he will turn out to be a very good signing.

‘It came out of the blue, really.

‘With all due respect, we hadn’t heard of him.

‘But he’s a good size and he will hopefully do well for us.’

Pearce admits he was struck by Futacs’ imposing frame when he first saw him at Pompey’s Eastleigh training base.

His height and weight led the 23-year-old to the conclusion he must be a defender or a goalkeeper.

So he was surprised to see the player, who spent last season on loan at German second division side FC Ingolstadt 04, line up as a striker when the squad went about their work.

That means Pearce is often going to have his hands full dealing with the power Futacs brings to the table in sessions.

He said: ‘When I saw him I thought he was a keeper or a defender or something. Definitely not a striker.

‘I thought “jeez, thanks for that!”.

‘He’s a nice lad, though, and hopefully he can settle in quickly.’

Futacs’ addition now makes it nine signings for Pompey this summer.

He joins Pearce, Stephen Henderson, Greg Halford, David Norris, Christian Dailly, Varney, Huseklepp and Benjani as Cotterill’s additions.

Those deals have now given some depth to a squad which has been hopelessly short of the numbers needed during Cotterill’s reign at the club.

With the move to just five subs this season, Cotterill has found himself in the unusual position of having to leave players out of his squad.

Hermann Hreidarsson, Ryan Williams and Christian Dailly were the men to miss out against Cardiff.

But the hope is, there could still be further arrivals before the close of the transfer window tomorrow night.

Cotterill is trying to get another two faces in on temporary and permanent deals, although he is unsure of the likelihood of that happening.

Pearce believes the squad is now finally taking shape nicely.

He said: ‘We’re slowly getting a squad together now.

‘Marko will hopefully bring something different to the team to what we already have.

‘It’s a good little squad now and hopefully we can start picking up the right results.’