Paul Downing: Fellow Portsmouth new-boy Ellis Harrison is a handful and will hopefully fires us into Championship

Ellis Harrison, left, in action for Ipswich. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Ellis Harrison, left, in action for Ipswich. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
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Paul Downing is hoping ‘handful’ Ellis Harrison can fire Pompey to League One promotion.

The pair both completed moves to Fratton Park on the same day last month.

Harrison joined the Blues for around £450,000 from Ipswich Town, while Downing arrived on a free transfer following his release from Blackburn Rovers shortly afterwards. 

When Harrison was at Bristol Rovers, Downing used to be tasked with marking the striker when representing both MK Dons and Blackburn.

Now they’ll share a dressing room at PO4 – something the centre-back is extremely grateful for.

Downing feels the signing of Harrison is a smart piece of business from boss Kenny Jackett.

The Welshman proved himself at third-tier level with the Gas.

Now Downing believes Harrison can display his prowess in front of goal during next season’s Championship charge. 

He said: ‘I’ve played against Ellis a couple of times when he was at Bristol Rovers and I know what a good player he is.

‘He is a handful and I’m delighted that we are now on the same team.

‘I think that it’s a really good signing for the football club.

‘Ellis is proven at this level and that’s what we need.

‘Hopefully he can fire the goals in because the most important thing in football is scoring goals.

‘Hopefully he can hit the ground running and fire us to promotion – that would be ideal.’

Harrison will add pace to Jackett’s striking options – something Pompey lacked last campaign.

But Downing insists the Newport-born forward’s game is more than just speed.

And that will allow Harrison to adapt his game if he’s required to.

The defender added: ‘Ellis has got all-round attributes to his game.

‘If we need to mix it up and play a different way then he can do everything.

‘That’s what you want from a number nine.

‘I’m sure there were other clubs who were after him and for us to get him is a credit to everyone who managed to achieve that.’