How ex-Wigan, Derby, Wolves and Blackpool forward could be the answer to Portsmouth's January transfer prayers

The answer to Pompey’s January attacking prayers could be hiding in plain sight.

By Sam Cox
Wednesday, 5th January 2022, 12:44 pm

With the Blues stuttering in front of goal throughout the 2021-22 season so far, Danny Cowley is seeking frontline reinforcements this month.

But the Fratton chief will be buoyed by Michael Jacobs’ recent cameo appearances – which may have given him food for thought.

The former Wigan winger has reportedly been deemed surplus to requirements on the south coast, and could be used to leverage new signings.

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However, it may just be worth retaining his services for a crucial play-off push during the second half of the campaign.

This was highlighted following his introduction from the bench in Monday’s 0-0 draw with Cambridge, where the tricky forward played the final 15 minutes.

It’s fair to say during the stop-start affair at Abbey Stadium, Pompey’s attacking play was hamstrung by their 23-day Covid-impacted break between fixtures.

But during the 21-minute long injury-time, Jacobs looked most likely to find or create the goal which eventually evaded Cowley’s side.

Michael Jacobs has scored two league goals this season. Picture: Dennis Goodwin/ProSportsImages

In under quarter of an hour on the field, he registered one shot and one key pass, while drawing a foul.

He also produced one accurate cross and maintained an 81 per cent pass completion rate – a higher statistic than colleagues Marcus Harness (70 per cent) and Ronan Curtis (50 per cent).

And it wasn’t the first time the ex-Wolves winger has proven his worth from the dugout this season.

In a tightly-contested fixture against Gillignham last month, Cowley again turned to the experienced pro to turn the screw.

Then, deep into injury-time, Jacobs glided into the box and saw his deflected effort find its way into the net to snatch three points.

A proposed move to Ipswich, which collapsed at the 11th hour, was followed by persistent injury issues that plagued his progress under the Blues head coach.

Then after breaking into Cowley’s XI by scoring in a 2-1 victory against AFC Wimbledon, he was struck down by a virus that further extended his time on the sidelines.

The rigours of this year’s January transfer window have increased due to Coronavirus ripping through clubs across the country – potentially scuppering pre-planned deals.

So it may be worth keeping an established EFL stalwart for the now congested fixture run-in, rather than gambling on unsecured transfers.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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