Portsmouth forgotten man Reeco Hackett-Fairchild issued strongly-worded challenge by straight-talking Danny Cowley

Danny Cowley has promised Pompey forgotten man Reeco Hackett-Fairchild a clean slate.

By Neil Allen
Wednesday, 30th June 2021, 3:00 pm
Reeco Hackett-Fairchild has featured for just 63 minutes during 18 months at Fratton Park. Picture: Kieran Cleeves/ProSportsImages
Reeco Hackett-Fairchild has featured for just 63 minutes during 18 months at Fratton Park. Picture: Kieran Cleeves/ProSportsImages

But the Blues boss has challenged the left-sided winger to show he ‘wants it more than anything else’.

In 18 months at Fratton Park the former Bromley man has been restricted to just 63 minutes of first-team action.

What’s more, that sole outing arrived in the Leasing.com Trophy – ensuring Hackett-Fairchild has still to make his Pompey league bow.

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Having been on loan at Southend upon Cowley’s March arrival, Monday’s pre-season training return marked the first time the head coach has worked with him.

And he has called on the 23-year-old to prove his worth.

Cowley told The News: ‘We saw Reeco a bit at Bromley, we liked him when we were at Lincoln.

‘I’m looking forward to seeing his work up close.

‘I think he’s got real athleticism. If you are going to build a footballer, you’re going to build him like Reeco aren’t you, in terms of physicality and technique.

‘He has a lot of ability and excelled at National League level – now the next challenge for him is to excel in the Football League.

‘This move thus far hasn’t gone as well as he would have liked or how we would have liked.

‘But this is very much a clean slate and a new opportunity. It’s for him now to take that opportunity.

‘You have got to want it more than anything else. If you don’t want it more than anything else then there’ll be excuses along the way and you’ll end up taking them.

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‘You have got to want it more than anything else – and that’s the challenge for him. Time will tell.

‘I want to see how much he wants it.’

Hackett-Fairchild appeared 25 times fo Southend last season, yet couldn’t prevent them suffering relegation out of the Football League.

Meanwhile, his only goal arrived on a January 2021 debut against Barrow, proving to be the matchwinner in a 1-0 triumph.

Cowley added: ‘We know people at Southend and I thought it was a really tough loan for Reeco to go to a club on the demise.

‘They were having difficulties within the club so it was a real challenge for him.

‘I thought his form was in and out, inconsistent if I am honest, but it’s not easy when you are an attacking player and you change your manager in a relegation battle.

‘Sometimes you learn in adversity.’

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