The management first Portsmouth boss has to overcome against Rochdale, Wigan and Burton Albion to keep promotion charge going

Danny Cowley admitted he’s entering uncharted territory as he bids to solve Pompey’s striker crisis.

Thursday, 1st April 2021, 6:00 am

The Blues boss confessed he’s never gone into a game without a senior out-and-out front man to choose from.

That’s the scenario the Cowleys will face in the next three games - starting against Rochdale at Fratton Park on Good Friday.

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John Marquis’ unsuccessful appeal against his red card at Shrewsbury means he will miss the next three games, while both Jordy Hiwula and Ellis Harrison are sidelined through injury.

Aussie winger Ryan Williams was thrown forward for the game’s finale at New Meadow last weekend, while Marcus Harness potentially has the attributes to play through the middle and has bagged two goals in two games.

The most likely outcome appears to be using Ronan Curtis through the middle, with the winger returning from international duty with the Republic of Ireland without seeing any game time.

Cowley explained the scenario is one he’s never faced from the moment he moved into management with Concord Rangers in 2008, but the 42-year-old is ready face the challenge head on.

The Cowleys have a striker challenge to overcome. Picture: Daniel Chesterton/

He said: ‘This is my 14th season. In 14 years I don’t ever remember going into a game without a number nine. It’s been a long time!

‘It’s a tough position and really specialised. After the keeper it’s the most specialised position on the pitch.

‘It is (a lot to take on board). That’s what we have to skilfully overcome.

‘We will work it out, don’t worry. We’re pretty determined to find the best way for the next three games.

‘We have to find the solution - and that’s something I’m excited about doing.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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