Mark Catlin's transfer admission as Portsmouth seek 'open-minded' approach to recruitment under Danny Cowley

Chief executive Mark Catlin has acknowledged Pompey have been ‘guilty’ of a transfer approach which has failed to pay off.

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 4:55 am

Now he insists they must be open-minded over the direction Danny Cowley’s own recruitment drive heads.

The Blues have entrusted their head coach with overhauling the playing squad he inherited from Kenny Jackett.

Cowley previously intimated he requires eight new faces, although that number may now have to be extended, with fresh deals not yet signed by those tabled new contracts.

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In recent years, costly purchases of John Marquis, Ellis Harrison and Marcus Harness have failed to take Pompey into the Championship.

And Cowley has been challenged to broaden the club’s range of recruitment.

Catlin told The News: ‘A huge part of Danny and Nicky coming in is their ability to develop players – and we have to be open-minded where they come from.

Danny Cowley has been challenged to overhaul Pompey's squad - and Mark Catlin believes the recruitment drive must be 'open-minded'. Picture: Joe Pepler

‘A lot of clubs at this level – and we have been guilty of it ourselves in the past – tend to buy what you consider to be some of the best players in League One or players maybe that have been in the Championship and haven’t quite been able to make that grade.

‘But we have to look further afield.

‘The successful ones we’ve had often have come from non-league, not just League One or the Championship.

‘There’s also those coming out of other clubs’ Academies or under-23s systems. You have to continue to look at those as well.’

Pompey can point to the successful identification of Matt Clarke, Jamal Lowe and Ronan Curtis in recent years.

Clarke was a teenager with Ipswich without a first-team league start, while Lowe came from non-league Hampton & Richmond.

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