Why John Marquis can go on Portsmouth scoring streak after suffering similar dry patches at Doncaster Rovers

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John Marquis can go on a scoring streak once he hits the Pompey goal trail again. 

The striker suffered similar dry patches at Doncaster, but always rediscovered his touch in the final third.

Marquis has endured a frustrating spell at Fratton Park following his big-money move from the Keepmoat in July.

The ex-Millwall man bagged 67 goals in three campaigns for Donny and forged himself a reputation as one of the deadliest marksmen in League One.

He's struggled to get going on the south coast so far, though.

Marquis has bagged only twice in 14 appearances, firing a blank in his past nine outings, and was dropped to the bench for Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Gillingham.

John Marquis in action against Gillingham. Picture: Graham Hunt

John Marquis in action against Gillingham. Picture: Graham Hunt

Doncaster Free Press reporter, Liam Hoden, revealed the former Millwall youngster went through the same sort of form for Rovers.

Yet he said one goal could see Marquis firing on all cylinders for Kenny Jackett’s side.

Hoden said: ‘He was quite streaky in terms of his goals (at Doncaster). What he’s going through at Pompey wasn’t as bad as Donny, but the longest he went without a goal was eight games.

‘Once he does score, though, he’ll go on a bit of a run then might not score for a few games, then go on a run again. 

‘He’s a confidence player but the frustration he feels can overtake him a little bit.

‘Rather than being down in the dumps, he’ll be desperate to make things happen. We saw that at the Keepmoat when Pompey won at Doncaster earlier in the month.

‘When we used to speak to him, he put a lot of emphasis on the hard work he puts in and the benefit it has on the team, which it does.

‘But you can tell on the pitch when things aren’t going his way – he can’t hide it.

‘It certainly does affect him when he's not scoring but he quickly gets his confidence back.

‘One goal can change his form in front of goal overnight really.

‘He can get back to his best. With seeing him for three years at Donny, you wouldn’t be surprised if he scored in four or five successive games once he does score.’

Marquis operated both as a lone striker and in a two-pronged attack for Doncaster. 

Hoden felt the former role got the best out of the striker.

And that was mainly because of the rapport he had with the mercurial James Coppinger.

Hoden added: ‘The first season he arrived in League Two, he was a level above playing in a team that was a level above, so it was understandable he got so many goals.

‘He had a tougher season back in League One in 2017-18. Doncaster weren’t as flowing as they had been previously but it all came good last season.

‘Him and Coppinger had a fantastic partnership, while Mallik Wilks on the other side was quite direct.

‘With Coppinger, you have an incredibly intelligent player and he just knew what Marquis needed.

‘The understanding just clicked very quickly. Coppinger knew where he'd be and they really developed together.

‘It did help they had a season in League Two when they were better than the vast majority of teams in the division.

‘The first season back in League One, he was playing alongside Andy Williams. Williams would be caught offside a lot but Marquis is very good with his off-the-ball runs.

‘The best they got out of him I felt was when he was playing in a three. 

‘Wilks was very much on the touchline and Coppinger buzzed around everywhere.

‘That seemed to work better than when he was in a two and where I think he’s better off.

‘That’s when he has to curb his enthusiasm for dropping deep, though, because he can drop deep. 

‘He was always the main man and a lot of stuff went through him a great deal.’