Portsmouth boss Danny Cowley confident he can 'unearth' Leicester loanee George Hirst's goalscoring potential after Rotherham pain

Danny Cowley believes he can be the manager to unlock George Hirst’s goalscoring power.

Wednesday, 4th August 2021, 1:43 pm
Pompey newcomer George Hirst gets off a shot during his first-half outing against Bournemouth under-21s on Tuesday. Picture: Colin Farmery

Pompey’s new loanee arrives at Fratton Park having failed to score in 32 appearances at Rotherham last term.

Still, the 22-year-old has yet to find the back of the net in the Premier League and Football League.

Sign up to our Portsmouth FC newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Regardless, Cowley has high hopes for the 6ft 3in centre-forward, who will be challenged to lead the Blues’ attack.

And he is convinced he can help Hirst fire.

Pompey’s head coach told The News: ‘George is a talented boy, he’s athletic, you play into him, you play up to him, he loves the balls down the sides.

‘He can really stretch the pitch for you and is a good finisher, with a lovely right foot – yet it hasn’t quite happened for him yet.

‘Sometimes for us and where we are at, we must try to find that player that it hasn’t quite happened for.

‘You have to work out the reasons why he had a frustrating time last year at Rotherham.

‘We think we may know the reasons why – and we think we can help him with his progression and development.

‘We’re thankful to Leicester for trusting us with George and look forward to working with him.

Read More

Read More
For the latest Pompey news direct to your inbox sign up for our free newsletter

‘Sometimes you have to find these players where it hasn’t quite happened for them. You know they have potential and it’s for us to unearth that.

‘We know George is going to be a good player, we’ve just got to try to create the right pathway for him. That’s the aim.’

Hirst has netted four times in seven EFL Trophy appearances for Leicester under-21s, while was also on the scoresheet during a season with Belgian second division side OH Leuven.

Now he’s at Fratton Park to provide goal-scoring competition for John Marquis, Ellis Harrison and Gassan Ahadme.

He added: ‘He’s a nine, probably a nine-and-a-half.

‘He’s got good all-round quality, he presses the ball very, very aggressively, has a real energy and intensity, and also carries a goal threat for us.

‘George gives us some more options, which is always what you want because we are a particularly small squad and need competition for places.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

The News has launched a subscription offer which gives you unlimited access to all of our Pompey coverage, starting at less than 14p a day.

You can subscribe here to get the latest news from Fratton Park - and to support our local team of expert Pompey writers.