Portsmouth’s hopes of finishing inside the play-off places in league One this season were dealt a real blow by their 2-1 defeat at home to Burton Albion on Saturday.
That defeat ended a run of four successive wins for Danny Cowley since he took over, but they are still sat in fifth place in the League One table and are still well placed to secure their top-six position. However, they will now have to watch over their shoulders with plenty of sides below them in the table still in with a chance of catching up to them.
Depending on what division Portsmouth are going to be playing in next season it will be vital that they make the right sort of decisions in the transfer market to strengthen the squad.
Cowley will hope he is given the backing to bring in the sort of players he feels can improve the side. However, there might well be a chance for one or two talented academy players to be given a chance and save them so money.
With that in mind, we take a look at TWO of their academy prospects who could potentially break through next term and save the club some money…
One player who has already threatened to break through regularly into Portsmouth’s first team this season is defender Haji Mnoga and the 18-year-old has already been able to make three starts in League One and five appearances in total for Pompey. However, he has largely had to settle for place in and around the squad rather than being a full regular.
Mnoga is a player that looks to have a lot of potential to be developed into a strong defender capable of playing in their side, but he is heading into the summer entering the final few months of his current deal. However, that deal was signed midway through last term and included the option to be extended by a further 12 months.
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Portsmouth’s chief executive Mark Catlin suggested back in March that a lot of the players that are out of contract in the summer have one-year options that could well be taken up in the summer. If Mnoga is amongst them and has a strong pre-season he might be able to convince that he is ready to be a part of their starting line-up for next term.
Another player who is heading into the final few months his current deal, but who they are reportedly weighing up keeping hold of is forward Eoin Teggart. The 19-year-old has had some experience of first-team football with Portsmouth appearing twice for them in the Papa John’s Trophy. While he also spent time out on loan with Gosport Borough in the first half of the campaign.
Teggart has been a player that has looked like he had the potential to make a first-team breakthrough over the last year or so. He has been rewarded for the progress he has been making with a recent call up to the Republic of Ireland’s under-21s. That suggests that he is doing something right within Portsmouth’s youth sides.
Were the club to keep hold of the 19-year-old in the summer, then he could potentially get the chance to impress in pre-season and then maybe earn a place within the first-team squad.