‘They have the potential to play for this club' - Danny Cowley sees a Portsmouth future for some of his mystery triallists

Players for today, players for tomorrow – Danny Cowley admits there could well be a Pompey future for some of their triallist number.

Thursday, 8th July 2021, 4:55 am
Danny Cowley addresses some of Pompey's triallists on the first day of pre-season training. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

The Blues’ head coach has been tightlipped over the identity of those unfamiliar faces who have bolstered training numbers.

Nonetheless, such has been their impact, Cowley is weighing up permanent stays.

The Fratton faithful will be given a glimpse of the triallists when Pompey face the Hawks at Westleigh Park (3pm) on Saturday.

Sign up to our Portsmouth FC newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

According to Cowley, the ‘majority’ of his 10 triallists are youngsters, while there are also several experienced pros.

And some may be staying at Fratton Park beyond pre-season.

‘Triallists have to light up our eyes to stay here – and they can do that in many different ways,’ Cowley told The News.

‘I like players that love the game, I like players that enjoy training, I like players that love to run, and obviously have the technical and tactical intelligence to go with that.

‘We like hard working, hungry boys, but it depends on the position and depends on the qualities we need.

‘They have trained well to this point, we like what we’ve seen in training, it has been good.

‘We’ve got some really young boys – 18, 19 and 20 year-olds – that definitely have some qualities we like. They have the potential to play for this football club in the future.

‘If I look at the triallists, the majority fall into that young category. We didn’t take any scholars on this year, so there’s a gap for young players at this club and we’d like to fill that if we could.

Read More

Read More
For the latest Pompey news direct to your inbox sign up for our free newsletter

‘However, they must have the right level of competence to be of value for them and us ultimately.

‘There are one or two senior ones that certainly have a really good opportunity, but they will be much more about playing for today.

‘We’ve liked what we have seen in training, but we’ll have another closer look in the games we’ve got coming up.’

Pompey’s triallists were involved in Wednesday’s opening friendly at QPR and are also scheduled to feature at Westleigh Park on Saturday.

Cowley concedes the situation is not ideal, yet with an extensive squad rebuilding programme under way, patience is required.

He added; ‘It’s not ideal, we would definitely have loved to have three, four or five more in the building today, but that is not possible at the moment.

‘Every manager would like his full squad to work with – but here only two-thirds of the squad are getting the value for that.

‘We all knew when we weren’t able to re-sign the likes of Tom Naylor, Jack Whatmough, Ben Close and Ryan Williams that we had an awful lot of recruitment work to do.

‘We are in that process, there’s a lot of hard work involved.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

The News has launched a subscription offer which gives you unlimited access to all of our Pompey coverage, starting at less than 14p a day.

You can subscribe here to get the latest news from Fratton Park - and to support our local team of expert Pompey writers.