£4.5m former Portsmouth triallist makes non-league return two years after Derby County exit

Former Pompey triallist Andre Wisdom has finally found himself a new club after two years in the footballing wilderness.
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The 30-year-old, who cost Derby County £4.5m when he moved to Pride Park from Liverpool in 2017 – has been snapped up by National League North side Warrington Town.

There, the once highly-rated defender will look to kick-start a career that has significantly stalled in recent seasons.

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Trials at Sheffield United and Birmingham – and Polish side Warta Poznań – in subsequent years have proved fruitless.

Meanwhile, former Blues boss Danny Cowley handed Wisdom the opportunity to earn himself a deal at Fratton Park in the summer of 2022 – after year after his Derby exit and two years after an armed mugging saw the player stabbed.

The experienced triallist featured in the pre-season friendlies against the Hawks and Gosport Borough, but was not included in the Pompey party that flew out to Spain for warm-weather training just days later.

Before opting not to offer Wisdom a contract, Cowley told The News: ‘We’re trying to bring in a player who can play right of a back three and maybe at right-back as well, in order to give us the balance in the squad we would like.

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‘He’s been excellent in both games. He was great for the young players with his experience and leadership.

Former Liverpool defender Andre Wisdom featured twice for Pompey in pre-season in the summer of 2022.Former Liverpool defender Andre Wisdom featured twice for Pompey in pre-season in the summer of 2022.
Former Liverpool defender Andre Wisdom featured twice for Pompey in pre-season in the summer of 2022.

‘He had a tough year last year, hence why he’s available for us to have a look at.

‘We know what a good player he is, it was more to see where he was physically and in terms of his fitness. He’s had two very good 45 minutes for us.’

Appearing on The Beautiful Game Podcast earlier this year, Wisdom admitted his career had not been the same since being the victim of an armed robbery and stabbing incident in Liverpool in 2020.

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He said: ‘It was frustrating as when I've come out of hospital after like three days, I had a couple of operations, it was like my body just wasn't the same.

‘I tried to get back into football and it wasn't the same, I wasn't getting the same output in terms of power or speed.

‘It was hard to take and with that comes a lot of other niggles. I got stabbed in the head I got headaches. A little cut here (pointing to his chest) I couldn't breathe that well when I came out of hospital because I had fluid on my lungs.

‘I think I rushed coming back to football. So once I could walk, which was like three weeks I went straight back to football.

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‘It was the last year of my contract and Derby were going through the financial issues so I remember speaking to my agent at the time I was like I'm going to play so I'm in the shop window and then rest in the summer. Then I ripped my groin.’