In at the deep end, but Kenny Jackett pleased with Portsmouth debutant Reeco Hackett-Fairchild

An ankle injury, a booking and 63 minutes – Reeco Hackett-Fairchild’s Pompey debut in a nutshell.

Wednesday, 8th January 2020, 12:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 8th January 2020, 12:00 pm

And a Blues debut which pleased manager Kenny Jackett, who elected to throw in the recruit from Bromley for his debut last night.

The attacker lined-up on the left-hand side of the attacking three in Pompey’s 2-1 victory at Walsall in the Leasing.com Trophy.

Hackett-Fairchild had only arrived from non-league football the previous day for an undisclosed fee.

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Reeco Hackett-Fairchild was almost forced off through injury during the first half of his debut at Walsall, but insisted on carrying on. Picture: Paul Thompson/ProSportsImages

Certainly it was a case of being thrown in at the deep end, but his manager was impressed.

Jackett said: ‘Reeco showed some nice touches and, since joining on Monday, it has been good for him to get a Pompey shirt on and obviously get to know all the players.

‘I think he did well, he has a lot of class about him. He can play in any of the three positions behind the striker, his ability level is high.

‘Throwing him in there (at Walsall) was quite a tough test, but there was no training back at Portsmouth for him so he may as well start.

‘I didn’t think he would play 90 minutes, so it was either way put him on as a late sub or start him and see how he looks.

‘It was a great game for him to make his debut and get a Pompey shirt on.’

Hackett-Fairchild was replaced by Tom Naylor in the 63rd minute at the Bescot Stadium.

Although the 21-year-old was almost forced off towards the end of the first half after sustaining a knock while defending by the byline.

At one stage, physio Bobby Bacic indicated a substitution was required, yet the debutant insisted on returning to the field of play.

Jackett added: ‘Reeco went over on his ankle, he said he’s okay, it shouldn't be too bad.

‘We were going to bring him off, but it started to ease and he wanted to continue. Hopefully it won’t be too bad, it’s not something that will be a major problem.’