Only one surprise name on Portsmouth retained list as Danny Cowley's revolution begins in earnest

It's the announcement the Fratton faithful have been desperate for since the disappointing Accrington defeat.

Sunday, 16th May 2021, 9:38 am

After Pompey missed out on the League One play-offs, all eyes swiftly switched towards Danny Cowley's summer rebuild.

There was scarcely a supporter who felt a major overhaul wasn't required after the Blues failed to escape the third tier yet again.

Who would survive the revolution was the burning question.

Danny Cowley. Picture: Dennis Goodwin

Now we know exactly who Cowley envisages in his 2021-22 plans after Pompey's retained list was announced.

In truth, the only surprising name deemed surplus to requirements is Andy Cannon

When fit this season, the midfielder featured regularly. As Pompey sat at the summit of the table during the festive period, he was being touted as a player of the season candidate by some.

The ex-Rochdale ace was at the fulcrum of the team, forging a crucial partnership with Tom Naylor.

When the January transfer window opened, there were plenty of calls for a like-for-like replacement to be signed to serve as cover should Cannon sustain an injury. His presence was pivotal.

As it happened, an ongoing back problem limited his game-time after Cowley's arrival, with his high-octane style severely negated.

That handed Ben Close an opportunity to stake his claim, with the academy graduate being an admirer of Cowley and took the chance.

Cannon won't likely be short of suitors as a free agent, especially in League One, and a club nearer his Manchester home is most likely.

Jordy Hiwula, another Manchester lad, won't have been shocked by his exit. The striker arrived as a free agent after last summer’s transfer window closed to serve as cover.

Hiwula's opportunities have been limited, especially in the league, and although there were fleeting glimpses of his talent he could never dislodge John Marquis or Ellis Harrison.

Having also been back-up at Coventry the previous campaign, the ex-Huddersfield man will surely be searching for regular opportunities at his next club.

Charlie Daniels was perhaps one of the most disappointing signings of the campaign. Previously a Premier League regular and having by all accounts impressed at Shrewsbury, the former Bournemouth left-back excited fans aplenty when he arrived in January.

Aged 34, Cowley will covet a younger candidate to challenge 30-year-old Brown for the spot next term.

In addition, we already knew keepers Duncan Turnbull and Taylor Seymour were going while Bryn Morris will be on the move again this summer having failed to help Northampton return their League One status on loan.

Now the attention turns to the quintet who remain in negotiations.

Close, Tom Naylor, Jack Whatmough, Ryan Williams and Craig MacGillivray remain locked in talks to stay at PO4.

Realistically, not all five will stay, whether that’s because of offers elsewhere, finances another other facets.

As things stand, Pompey have 13 players under contract for next term – and now the attention turns to the potential fresh faces that will come through the door.