Stepping into Kenny Jackett's shoes: five strikers Portsmouth should look at this summer

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Pompey are seeking to bolster their striker options this summer. 

With Omar Bogle and James Vaughan’s loan deals coming to a close, Oli Hawkins and Brett Pitman are the only natural front men remaining in Kenny Jackett’s squad.

From left to right: Plymouth's Freddie Ladapo, Nottingham Forest's Tyler Walker and Gillingham's Tom Eaves

From left to right: Plymouth's Freddie Ladapo, Nottingham Forest's Tyler Walker and Gillingham's Tom Eaves

The Blues boss has revealed he’s aiming to freshen up the number nine and 10 positions during the transfer window.

Ellis Harrison and Chuks Aneke are both on Pompey’s radar but we’ve selected five other forwards Jackett should look at...

Tom Eaves

There’d be few members of the Fratton faithful who wouldn’t be pleased if the Liverpudlian moved to Fratton Park. 

Eaves has been prolific for Gillingham over the past two season and is regarded as one of the best goalscorers in League One. 

The 6ft 5in marksman scored 40 goals in 97 appearances for the Gills – including an unbelievable strike at Fratton Park in October.

Eaves has turned down at new deal at Prestfield and is available on a free.

However, Jackett may not want another big man with Hawkins already at PO4, while the 27-year-old is likely to be coveted by sides in the Championship.

Tyler Walker

A player who first-team coach Jake Wigley will know well from his Nottingham Forest days.

Walker spent last season on loan at Mansfield Town in League Two.

He scored 26 times in 52 games as the Stags suffered play-off semi-final defeat to Newport County.

Forest boss Martin O’Neill will likely want to run the rule over Walker during pre-season.

But should he feel the forward needs another spell out on loan up the Football League ladder, Pompey could be the ideal move. 

The son of former England defender Des, the 22-year-old was capped seven times for the Three Lions’ under-20s.

Macauley Bonne

He was regarded as the hottest prospects in non-league football last season.

After a difficult first spell in the Football League at Colchester, Bonne dropped down to the National League with Leyton Orient in 2017.

That decision beared fruit for the Ipswich-born ace. He plundered 45 goals in 97 appearances, with the O’s being crowned champions last term.

The 23-year-old reportedly has a £200,000 release clause in his contract, although the likes of Leicester, Sheffield United and Middlesbrough are apparently after him

Pompey were said to be chasing Bonne last summer. 

Freddie Ladapo

Pompey were linked with a switch for the Plymouth forward in January and reportedly had a bid turned down. 

Despite the Pilgrims being relegated from League One, Ladapo personally had a successful season.

He netted 19 times in 49 outings and caused the Blues problems during the 1-1 draw at Home Park in February.

The former Crystal Palace man may not want fancy the drop to the fourth tier next term.

Ladapo remains under contract at Plymouth so Pompey would have to pay a fee. 

Caolan Lavery

A Fratton Park return would be welcomed by fans aplenty.

The former Northern Ireland under-21 international has been released by Sheffield United and is without a club.

Lavery spent three months on loan at Pompey from Sheffield Wednesday.  during the 2015-16 season.

He struck up a successful strike partnership with Marc McNulty and scored four goals in 13 appearances before returning to Hillsborough. 

Last season, he bagged six times in 29 appearances to help Bury to League Two promotion.