Hacks Academy: Portsmouth youngster Josh Flint 'buzzing' after dream debut

Josh Flint, right, celebrates his goal against Norwich under-21s with Leon Maloney
Josh Flint, right, celebrates his goal against Norwich under-21s with Leon Maloney
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Budding sports journalist Martin Lloyd caught up with Pompey youngster Josh Flint following his goalscoring first-team debut against Norwich City under-21s in the Leasing.com Trophy on Saturday.

The 18-year-old netted the Blues’ second goal and set up Ellis Harrison for one of his efforts as the Blues made it two wins out of two in this season’s competition.

It proved to be a dream debut for the Waterlooville youngster, who has been on Pompey's books since the age of eight.

And in his only interview following the game, Flint confided in eager reporter Lloyd –  who just so happens to be a former neighbour of the emerging Blues talent – about the joy he felt lining up and scoring for his hometown team.

By Martin Lloyd

Pompey continued their EFL Trophy defence on Saturday afternoon with a 3-1 victory over Norwich City’s under- 21 side – and among the scorers was Waterlooville’s Josh Flint, who marked his debut with a left-footed effort as well as an assist to set up Ellis Harrison for the Blues’ third, writes Martin Lloyd.

Flint joined the Pompey Academy aged eight and was awarded a scholarship with the club at the age of 16.

Since then, he has made numerous appearances for Mark Kelly’s under-18 team, as well as being named as a substitute for the Crawley Town EFL Trophy match prior to his debut on Saturday.

When asked how he felt to score his first goal for the club, he said: ‘I’m absolutely buzzing to make my debut, I grew up watching Pompey and now I just need to keep working hard and build on it.’

Did Flint think that, with more impressive performances, he could break into the fringes of the first team for league games?

He added: ‘I’m just going to work hard in training, and whenever I play and get given the chance to impress I’ve got to take it.

'I’ve been a Pompey fan all my life and I was a season-ticket holder when I was 15.’

Flint certainly made an impression on his fellow Pompey fans (2,855) who were at Saturday’s game at Fratton Park, scoring from close range in the 44th minute after his initial shot was saved. 

He then turned provider for Harrison to slot past keeper Archie Mair at the Fratton End, completing a brilliant overall performance from the 18-year-old.

A committed youngster, his footballing goal is to ‘play for Pompey, and I’ve just got to work hard to try and make that happen more and more’.

Flint certainly did and said all the right things on Saturday.

And with more performances like that he could well be knocking on the door for the central and attacking midfield places in the Pompey team currently occupied by the likes of Ben Close and Gareth Evans.

Kenny Jackett certainly has plenty of options in that area of the pitch with Brett Pitman, Marcus Harness, Andy Cannon, Tom Naylor, Ross McCrorie and Leon Maloney all in the running for a starting berth.

The Blues now shift their attention to Tuesday night’s fixture against Burton Albion, and it is a crucial game with Pompey looking to kick-start their League One campaign after a sluggish start to the season.

Flint could be in contention for the coming games, and he may enjoy more first-team action as Jackett begins to give more time to his youth players.

Josh Flint – a local boy who is certainly one to watch.