The transfer path that previously proved a treat for Portsmouth amid interest in Swindon's Scott Twine

The players surplus to requirements have been shifted, while negotiations with some key men ongoing following the retained list announcement.

Tuesday, 18th May 2021, 6:00 pm
Updated Tuesday, 18th May 2021, 6:19 pm

Now with Danny Cowley's summer overhaul under way, we await who will be the first signing under the head coach.

Plenty of names have already been linked with Pompey while there'll be players on Cowley's shopping list who, at this time, remain a secret.

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Scott Twine. Pete Norton/Getty Images

The midfielder's high up on Cowley's list of priorities, with his creative qualities seen as key ahead of a renewed League One promotion push.

Twine's turned down fresh terms to remain at Swindon following their relegation to the Football League's basement tier.

Despite the 21-year-old's best efforts, scoring seven times in 27 games, his exploits couldn't keep the Robins from an immediate return to League Two.

Perhaps there are some sceptical about recruiting someone who's just suffered the drop.

Nathan Thompson celebrates scoring for Pompey at Wembley. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey need performers who can guarantee they can deliver at the top end of the table.

Yet should the Blues land Twine, however, he'd tread the same path as arguably one of the most consistent players we’ve seen at PO4 since the return to the third tier.

The first signing of the Kenny Jackett era had come through the youth ranks at the County Ground – and arrived against the backdrop of relegation from League One.

Paul Cook had already put the wheels in motion for Nathan Thompson to join Pompey before his shock exit for Wigan in the summer of 2018.

Upon his appointment, Jackett was only too happy for that deal to be rubber-stamped.

While Thompson had suffered the drop with his hometown club, it didn't damage his own reputation. Before joining Pompey, he was also linked with the Championship.

If anyone did have initial doubts whether a player that had just been relegated could be a hit, they were swiftly put paid to.

Thompson's tough-tackling, wholehearted defensive style meant he immediately won over the Fratton faithful, while his trademark flop to buy cheap fouls under the slightest bit of pressure also went down a treat.

The right-back was a regular starter when fit and a highly-respected figure in what was by far the best Pompey side we've seen during the four years in League One in that 2018-19 season.

What’s more, his equalising header in the Checkatrade Trophy final triumph over Sunderland at Wembley brought pure elation to everyone present. A moment that will never be forgotten.

Granted, Thompson's exit was somewhat sullied, having stalled on a fresh deal in a bid to earn a desired Championship move. After that failed, he had to drop back down to the third tier with Peterborough, having briefly been forced to ask to train back with Pompey to maintain fitness levels.

Yet it can't be argued that, as a signing, he ranked among Craig MacGillivray, Lee Brown, Ben Thompson, Tom Naylor and Ronan Curtis as Jackett's better ones.

The fact he helped the Posh to promotion this term and is in their plans ahead of a Championship return underlines his quality.

If Twine follows in Thompson's footsteps, it can only augur well.