Danny Cowley has 'huge aspirations' for Portsmouth home-grown starlet - but issues contract warning

Danny Cowley has revealed his ‘huge aspirations’ for promising Pompey starlet Harry Jewitt-White.

Monday, 17th January 2022, 11:50 am

And he has challenged the midfielder to win a first professional contract.

The Wales under-18 international is widely regarded as the Blues’ brightest Academy product along with goalkeeper Toby Steward.

Jewitt-White, who comes from Hayling Island, has made three substitute appearances in the Papa John’s Trophy this season.

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He is now earmarked for a non-league loan spell away from Fratton Park to aid his development.

However, with the 17-year-old graduating from the Academy at the end of this season, he’s still waiting for Pompey to secure his future by tabling first-year pro terms.

Cowley told The News: ‘Our aim now is to get Harry out on loan, probably at the back of this window when things settle down.

‘We have huge aspirations for him, he’s training with us pretty much every day. We’re stretching him on the training pitch, what’s now needed is getting him some really challenging senior football.

Harry Jewitt-White has made three substitute appearances for Pompey this season. Picture: Graham Hunt/ProSportsImages

‘There’s a lot of interest in him, so now it’s about picking the right pathway for him.

‘He’s ready for the next stage of his development, which is to go out and play regular senior football – and he’s fighting for a professional contract.

‘I will be honest with you, I don’t give contracts out easily, they are so precious. These young players here have to work exceptionally hard to earn a contract, if they do then it means that little bit more to them.

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‘Once they get to sign a professional contract, that’s when the real hard work starts. The harder they've had to work for it, the more precious it is – and the more likely they are to fight for it.

‘A professional contract is an opportunity, nothing more than that.’

Jewitt-White totals five first-team appearances since making his debut in November 2020 against West Ham Under-21s.

The most recent was as an 88th-minute substitute in the 3-2 Papa John’s Trophy success over Exeter earlier this month.

Cowley added: ‘Harry needs to keep developing his game.

‘We have to define exactly what type of central midfielder he is. For me, a central midfielder is to destroy, create or score, they have to do one of those.

‘At the moment, he’s a little between those, so he’s got to make sure they define exactly what he is.

‘He’s got to keep working on his left side. He has a lovely ability to switch play from left to right, now has to work on his ability to switch it from right to left.

‘Harry needs to keep working on his physicality, keep working on his anticipation when we lose the ball, his aggression and combativeness in the duel, both in the first ball and the second.

‘He’s a quiet boy with technical ability – and has a chance.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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