Portsmouth boss hopeful of avoiding QPR intervention with Wheeler

Kenny Jackett remains hopeful goal hero David Wheeler won’t be the latest loanee to make a premature Pompey exit

Wednesday, 23rd January 2019, 8:47 am
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 6:33 pm
David Wheeler celebrates his late winner which earned Pompey a Checkatrade Trophy semi-final spot. Picture: Joe Pepler

The forward represents the Blues’ sole loan player, following this month’s departures of Joe Mason, Andre Green and Ben Thompson.

Green and Thompson were recalled by parent clubs Aston Villa and Millwall respectively, halfway through season-long arrangements.

Similarly, the stay of Wheeler, whose strike last night booked the Blues a semi-final spot in the Checkatrade Trophy, could be cancelled by QPR.

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David Wheeler celebrates his late winner which earned Pompey a Checkatrade Trophy semi-final spot. Picture: Joe Pepler

The 28-year-old has found first-team starts hard to come by at Fratton Park, an ongoing situation which may lead to his recall and being sent elsewhere.

Jackett said: ‘It’s a situation where it’s a season-long loan. There is a break in January and that is still open.

‘We hope he stays, I haven’t heard anything to the contrary, but I certainly hope so.

‘It’s one of those where the window is January and that’s it – so I wouldn’t say there’s necessarily a date we find out.

‘But I’m very pleased with Dave and would only want him to stay, naturally.’

Wheeler’s 85th-minute effort earned a 1-0 victory over Peterborough.

It was a third goal in 18 appearances since arriving on loan from Loftus Road in August.

Crucially, though, just six of those have been starts – with last weekend’s run-out at Oxford United a sole League One start.

Jackett added: ‘I was really pleased for Dave, he had our best chances and opportunities.

‘He can score goals, he’s a good player, he has a good goal record and can definitely go on a run of goals.

‘It was good to see him keep going in there after a couple of chances didn't go his way, that’s good character, and ultimately then a crucial finish with his left foot.’