Nicke Kabamba - the former Portsmouth and Hawks striker making instant impact in the Scottish Premiership

Former Pompey and Hawks forward Nicke Kabamba has made an instant impact on the Scottish Premiership.

Thursday, 23rd January 2020, 10:31 am
Updated Friday, 24th January 2020, 3:58 pm

The 26-year-old scored on his SPL debut against champions Celtic last night – days after netting on his maiden appearance for Killie in their 6-0 demolition of Queen’s Park in the Scottish Cup.

His instinctive header on 66 minutes at Rugby Park couldn’t prevent Alex Dyer’s side succumbing to a 3-1 defeat, though.

It left Kilmarnock seventh in the table and allowed Cetlic to maintain their two-point advantage over second-placed Rangers, who have a game in hand.

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Kabamba moved north of the border last week from Hartlepool, signing an 18-month deal for an undisclosed fee.

It represented his third transfer in the space of a year, and a fourth since his Fratton Park release in the summer of 2018.

But it shows a career heading on an upward trajectory after the front man struggled to impose himself on the south coast.

The former car salesman was signed by then Blues boss Paul Cook in January 2017 for an undisclosed fee after netting 16 goals for Hampton & Richmond in National League South.

Nicke Kabamba, right, celebrates Pompey's 2017 League Two title success with former team-mate Jamal Lowe

Yet he made only six appearances for Pompey, spending time on loan at both Colchester and Aldershot before Kenny Jackett released him 18 months later.

Kabamba was then picked up by the Hawks for their debut season in the National League.

He scored five goals in 29 appearances under Lee Bradbury’s management, before heading on loan to Hartelpool last January.

That switch resulted in seven goals in 17 appearances and earned the striker a permanent move to Victoria Park.

Now, after seven goals in 30 outings for the Pools this term, Kabamba finds himself playing in the top tier of Scottish football – and making an early impression as he embraces his latest challenge.