Portsmouth annual goalkeeper hunt underway - but mixed fortunes for last year's unsuccessful auditionees from Peterborough, Barnsley, Arsenal and Coventry

It’s a familiar summer goalkeeping search for Danny Cowley, yet those who unsuccessfully auditioned 12 months ago have subsequently endured mixed fortunes.

Monday, 27th June 2022, 3:00 pm

Although neither Corey Addai or Dan Gyollai are currently affiliated with a Football League club.

The pair were last year handed Pompey trials during a pre-season which saw Gavin Bazunu’s arrival and uncertainty develop over Alex Bass’ long-term presence.

Roll on 12 months and West Brom’s Josh Griffiths is the prime loan target, although the emergence of the promising Toby Steward may reduce the need for triallists.

As for Bass, back following a loan spell at Bradford, he is now entering the final 12 months of his deal, with his Pompey future still no clearer.

Regardless, Cowley’s goalkeeping hunt brought Addai and Gyollai to his attention last summer – one they wanted, one they didn’t, with neither signing.

The towering Addai, a former Arsenal youth player, sufficiently impressed the Blues’ head coach and goalkeeping coach Michael Poke to earn a contract offer.

Featuring in three friendlies, on each occasion as a second-half substitute for Bass, he was earmarked as Pompey’s third keeper.

Corey Addai trialled with Pompey last summer before moving to Danish club Esbjerg fB. Picture: Rogan Thomson/ JMP Sport.

That was until the move collapsed over concerns shown up during a medical, prompting Addai’s departure and, frustratingly, taking Cowley back to square one.

There was better news for the former Barnsley goalkeeper, however, subsequently clinching a one-year deal at Esbjerg fB in August 2021.

He featured four times in the Danish First Division, while was unused from the bench on another 15 occasions, as Esbjerg suffered relegation.

After the culmination of the season, he was among eight players released in May and is now seeking his next footballing challenge.

Then-Peterborough keeper Daniel Gyollai spent a week-long trial with Pompey last summer. Picture: David Rogers/Getty Images

Following the scrapping of Addai’s proposed Pompey arrival in July 2021, Cowley next turned to Peterborough’s Gyollai.

Transfer-listed and with the Posh open to a mutually-agreed departure, the Hungarian youth international was handed a week’s trial.

His debut was a behind-closed-doors friendly with Chelsea under-23s, coming off the bench for Bazunu to play 63 minutes in the 2-0 loss.

Gyollai subsequently featured for 46 minutes in a Pompey XI’s 1-0 win over Bournemouth under-21s, a match which also marked George Hirst’s first outing.

However, Pompey decided against pursuing their interest, with the keeper returning to Peterborough.

In December 2021, he was loaned to non-league Maidenhead, with the arrangement becoming permanent the following month.

He went on to feature 16 times as they successfully battled against relegation to finish 17th in the National League.

To cap an impressive entrance, the 25-year-old Gyollai was crowned the supporters’ Player of the Season and remains on their books.

It now remains to be seen which direction Cowley’s latest goalkeeping hunt takes Pompey.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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