The striker Portsmouth fans heard so much about - and will finally get a glimpse of when Peterborough visit Fratton Park

He was the striker the Fratton faithful heard about so much.

Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 5:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 6:28 pm

During the summer of 2018, you could scarcely get away from the name Mo Eisa.

He dominated the headlines and was the hot topic of conversation during the transfer window.

Now 18 months later, Pompey fans will finally get a first glimpse of him when Peterborough visit Fratton Park on Saturday.

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Against the backdrop of 25 goals in his maiden Football League campaign for Cheltenham in 2017-18, the former non-league hotshot was in popular demand.

The Whaddon Road side's gamble of plucking Eisa from Greenwich Borough in the Isthmian League division one south paid dividends and his exploits for a side that finished 17th in League Two meant it was inevitable he’d continue his trajectory up the pyramid.

The Blues were in pursuit for a protracted period but were beaten to the chase by Championship side Bristol City, who paid a reported fee of £1.5m

In the end, Kenny Jackett would have to settle with a deadline-day loan deal for Joe Mason from Wolves, while Conor Chaplin departed for Coventry.

Former Pompey target Mo Eisa will visit Fratton Park with Peterborough on Saturday. Picture: Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Come the close of the window, it appeared Jackett was perhaps short of a striker, with Oli Hawkins and Brett Pitman the only other options.

In fairness, though, Pompey hardly lacked firepower last season. Although they missed out on promotion, the Blues scored 109 goals in all competitions – no team outside the Premier League plundered more.

Jamal Lowe (17), Pitman (13), Gareth Evans (13), Ronan Curtis (12) and Hawkins (10) all hit double figures. Had the January transfer recruitment been better, Jackett’s men could now be in the second tier.

In contrast, Eisa struggled to acclimatise in the Championship. He made just six appearances for the Robins, didn’t break his goal duck and wasn’t handed an outing after December 2.

A disappointing campaign, no doubt, for a player chief executive Mark Ashton was ‘thrilled' to have signed at the time.

After just a term at City, Eisa was deemed surplus to requirements. Unsurprisingly, he attracted a bevy of potential suitors who still recognised raw potential and were not put off by a blunt spell at Ashton Gate.

Robins boss Lee Johnson confirmed bids had been lodged, but Pompey weren't one of the clubs.

Despite Jackett having plans to bolster his attack, he said Eisa wasn’t drawn up on the shopping list. It’s understood the forward was considered, but there were doubts over whether he could play in the Blues manager’s favoured 4-2-3-1 system.

Instead, Jackett opted for proven League One marksmen who’d spearheaded front lines on their own, signing long-term target Ellis Harrison from Ipswich and the prolific John Marquis from Doncaster.

Eisa would drop into the third tier when he was recruited by Peterborough for a club-record fee of more than £1.25m.

And the Sudan-born ace has gone on to form a deadly three-pronged attack with Ivan Toney and Marcus Maddison at London Road.

The Posh have bagged 40 goals in the league so far, with Eisa presently the 14-goal top scorer from 22 appearances in all competitions

In contrast, Marquis has scored only five times in 24 games, while Harrison’s struck seven goals in 19 outings.

Eisa will now travel to the club his signature was previously coveted by for Darren Ferguson’s men this weekend.

Eisa is certainly capable of one – and the Blues must nullify his threat if they’re to prevail with three points.