Portsmouth set to battle rival League One interest in former Southampton midfielder Jake Hesketh

Pompey are facing League One competition for Jake Hesketh.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 5:30 pm
Jake Hesketh lined up for Pompey in the first half of Saturday's friendly victory at the Hawks. Picture: Paul Collins

However, it is understood the former Southampton man is keen on Fratton Park being his permanent destination.

The 25-year-old has started both of the Blues’ friendlies this summer, the latest being Saturday’s 5-2 win over the Hawks.

He has been training with Pompey since the opening of pre-season after invited by Danny Cowley, who previously took him on loan while at Lincoln.

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Jake Hesketh featured in the first half of Pompey's friendly with the Hawks on Saturday. Picture: Harry Trump

Hesketh suffered an injury-hampered loan spell at Crawley last term, restricting him to 15 appearances for the League Two outfit.

Now a free agent following his release from Southampton, the midfielder has subsequently impressed the Blues’ head coach during pre-season.

Hesketh has demonstrated he is over his injury issues and continues to remain part of the squad which today travelled St George’s Park in Burton.

It is understood Pompey have been highly impressed with the ex-Burton loanee and are now weighing up handed over a contract.

Yet there also remains interest from fellow League One clubs and below for Hesketh.

Regardless, winning a deal with the Blues remains the priority for the Waltham Chase-based midfielder, who is keen to remain in the local area.

Cowley has already demonstrated his willingness to sign triallists to permanent deals following the arrival of Kieron Freeman at the weekend.

The former Sheffield United man has signed a two-year contract with Pompey, after arriving at Fratton Park for a trial a few days into pre-season.

Now Cowley is mulling over adding Hesketh to his squad as the former St Mary’s man seeks to further impress at St George’s Park.

After emerging through Southampton’s Academy, the Stockport-born player made four first-team appearances for the club.

That includes two appearances in the Premier League during the 2014-15 campaign.

He has since had loan spells at Burton, MK Dons, Lincoln and Crawley, before released by Southampton this summer.

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