Portsmouth boss Danny Cowley backed to utilise loan market - but is warned to tread carefully following disappointing deals with Coventry, Arsenal and Norwich

Danny Cowley has been encouraged to continue using the loan market to bolster this Pompey ranks.

By Mark McMahon
Friday, 3rd June 2022, 4:55 am

But he’s been advised that such forays must benefit the Blues first team, with the players brought in good enough to make the side genuine promotion contenders.

Cowley just about came out on top in this department last season.

Seven loan signings were made across the campaign – and while the arrivals of Gavin Bazunu, George Hirst and Hayden Carter proved astute moves, Mahlon Romeo’s form tailed off over the second half of the season.

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Meanwhile, the less said about Tyler Walker, Miguel Azeez and Gassan Ahadme’s brief spells at Fratton Park the better.

The Blues head coach has admitted he will once again utilise loans to improve his squad next season.

But with the likes of Bazunu, Hirst and Carter leaving huge voids following their returns to their parent clubs, he wants those brought in on a temporary basis to be the cherry on the cake rather than mainstays of what he's building.

That’s understandable and perhaps explains why 21.3 per cent of those who took part in our latest Big Pompey survey think negatively about loans.

Tyler Walker scored one goal in 15 loan appearances for Pompey last season

Yet, that leaves 78.7 per cent in favour of the transfer policy – with 21.6 of that majority view seeing loans as a means of bringing in quality that would otherwise not be affordable.

However, with Azeez, Ahadme and Walker’s Pompey performances clearly still fresh in the memory, 57 per cent of the votes cast clearly want only players who will be capable of making Pompey stronger and can be trusted by the manager.

With the latter trio managing just 26 League One appearances between them last season – 15 of which were starts – and only one third-tier goal, they clearly failed in that department.

There’s, obviously, room for improvement.

And with Walker coming in on huge wages, as Cowley opted for quality over quantity in January, there’s evidence that the money would have been better spent elsewhere.

That’s something Cowley will need to sort out as he enters a crucial third transfer market at Blues boss – the Fratton faithful will be watching!