Striker put up for loan by Pompey boss

Luke Rodgers has been made available for a loan move by Pompey
Luke Rodgers has been made available for a loan move by Pompey
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Luke Rodgers faces an uncertain Pompey future after Michael Appleton admitted he is willing to let the striker leave on loan.

The 30-year-old is one of just two out-and-out forwards in the Blues’ 20-man squad.

Yet Appleton is prepared to sacrifice the ex-Notts County man if it can free up space to bring in a replacement.

Rodgers joins Liam Walker and Josh Thompson in having their names circulated for loan deals.

However, while Appleton has indicated Walker and Thompson are part of his long-term plans, the picture is now unclear for Rodgers.

Shrewsbury are believed to be among several clubs showing interest in the forward.

And Appleton has revealed he is unsure whether there is a Fratton Park future for him.

Appleton said: ‘Who knows if Luke has a future here.

‘As the manager of the club, I have got to be really selfish and the bigger picture is the most important thing rather than one individual.

‘If he goes out and does well on loan somewhere then there is the opportunity to sit down and speak and do what’s best for him and the football club.

‘When I look at the impact Wes Thomas had when he was here, I’m now always going to be looking for that type of impact from the front two every single game.

‘I didn’t get that Saturday and I want more.

‘I realise we are short up front. It’s all right having four strikers in the building but if they are not good enough you might as well just have one.

‘We want strikers but we want quality strikers. That’s not saying for one second Luke Rodgers isn’t a quality striker.

‘All I am saying is, at the minute, I look on the impact Wes had on my team and at times it is like chalk and cheese from Saturday.

‘Luke has got a really good goalscoring record in this division and Izale (McLeod) has done well so far in terms of his goalscoring ratio.

‘But as a pair, for whatever reason, they have not really hit it off. Someone once said “it doesn’t matter what level you are playing at, you are only as good as your strikers”.

‘So if it is not quite working then you have got to do something about it and change it.

‘There has been a little bit of interest in Luke. We’re in dialogue with a couple of clubs.’

Wes Thomas, who has now returned to Bournemouth, scored three goals in his stay.

Rodgers has the same tally, but Appleton doesn’t feel he has been as effective.

He added: ‘Wes was like a catalyst in everything we did well in the period he was here. His work-rate at times also freed up a little bit of space for Izale.

‘There are two different types of work-rate. There is one in terms of running around but there is another where you are actually affecting the opposition.

‘At the minute we haven’t quite got that because we have lost it with Wes.’