Pompey boss eyeing further recruits

New Pompey signing Anton Walkes Picture: Colin Farmery
New Pompey signing Anton Walkes Picture: Colin Farmery
Gareth Evans in action against the Hawks.

Pompey’s set-piece expert seeking more success

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ANTON WALKES’ arrival will bolster Pompey’s midfield.

But Kenny Jackett hasn’t ruled out further strengthening in the middle of the park before the close of the January transfer window.

The Blues boss has recruited the versatile talent on loan from Spurs for the rest of the season – primarily in a central role.

Walkes will offer cover across the back line, too, as Pompey aim to inject some momentum into their campaign.

Derby’s Jamie Hanson remains an option ahead of deadline day, but Jackett will look to use his latest addition as a midfielder.

Jackett said: ‘Central midfield has been an area where we’ve been light of one or two players.

‘Having Walkes coming in does cover that area and add some competition while players are out.

‘He has the ability to play a few positions. Right-back is one and centre-half, but in terms of his qualities he’s a defender, so if I put him into midfield he will complement whoever I play him with.

‘I think he has some presence and can get tackles in. His running ability is good.

‘Some defensive qualities (in midfield) are needed to complement the players we already have.

‘Nathan Thompson is a versatile player and that is an option (moving him into midfield). It does help and, if at any stage he gets injured, we have another right-back.

‘Maybe some experience and decision making (has been missing from midfield).

‘There’s been no lack of effort from Adam May and Ben Close. They gave everything on Saturday.

‘Our midfield’s an area which has changed in recent weeks for reasons which happen to every club.

‘We’ve reacted by bringing somebody in I’m comfortable can play central midfield.’

Jackett stated it’s not a one-in, one-out recruitment policy for Pompey, but he would expect players to leave to facilitate further arrivals.

He’s confirmed there’s been no enquiries for players, but feels that is likely to change before 11pm tomorrow night.

When asked about a further midfield recruit, Jackett added: ‘In terms of players coming in we’ll see what happens.

‘At the moment we haven’t had enquiries, but that could be famous last words.

‘I think so (there will be enquiries). It does tend to build up. It’s a case of waiting for people to move and releasing others. It’s a chain reaction all the way down.

‘No, not necessarily (will players need to go to recruit). I think it will coincide with that, but it’s not necessarily the case.

‘I haven’t had any enquiries and I haven’t got anyone currently out of the 18 who is a senior pro (who can leave).

‘We haven’t got a surplus of senior pros or players I think people will take.

‘We’re going into a crucial period. If we want a chance of that top six, we want as many options as strong as possible.

‘If you do lose players we want players to replace them.’