This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Portsmouth are reportedly interested in a deal to sign Nottingham Forest defender Jordan Lawrence-Gabriel, according to a recent report from The Sun on Sunday (27th June, page 61).
It is also claimed by journalist Alan Nixon that Blackpool are reportedly keen on signing the full-back on a permanent basis this summer, as they look to prepare for life back in the Championship.
Lawrence-Gabriel spent last year’s campaign on loan with the Tangerines, and made 35 appearances for Neil Critchley’s side, as they won promotion via the play-offs in League One.
It appears as though the defender’s positive performances haven’t gone unnoticed though, with Portsmouth seemingly keen on landing his signature this summer.
He has three years remaining on his contract with Nottingham Forest, and it’ll be interesting to see whether the Reds are willing to listen to any offers for Lawrence-Gabriel’s services anytime soon.
We ask our Football League World writers what they make of Portsmouth’s interest in signing the full-back ahead of the new season, and whether he’d be a good addition to Danny Cowley’s side.
This would be a very good signing for Portsmouth if they managed to pull it off.
With James Bolton off to Plymouth, right-back is a position they could well need to strengthen in this summer, if they are to avoid leaving themselves short on that side of their defence.
Gabriel would obviously help fill that void, and given his performances for Blackpool last season, his arrival would feel like a big boost to Portsmouth’s hopes of a push for promotion from League One next season.
Given the fact that Blackpool are supposedly interested in him following their step up to the Championship, and the fact that Forest themselves may still need Gabriel, this would be a big coup for Portsmouth if they manage it in my opinion, meaning it could be one that is worth looking into further for Danny Cowley and co.
Considering that Portsmouth have one of the best right-backs in the league in Callum Johnson, then I’m not sure a move for Gabriel would make much sense.
Gabriel definitely has ability and the scope to improve even more at the age of 22, however he wasn’t a regular starter on loan at Blackpool last season as he shared the position with Ollie Turton, so I can’t see him displacing Johnson in Danny Cowley’s starting line-up.
Cowley definitely needs to add some competition in that area though with the departure of James Bolton to Plymouth this week, but Gabriel seems like the type of player who needs to kick on now with regular football.
He just wouldn’t be guaranteed that at Pompey, despite his obvious talents. There’s other big League One clubs who could do with bringing in a right-back though that he would fit in at much better, but if I were in charge of Portsmouth’s transfer dealings I’d be looking at more experienced competition for Johnson and not Gabriel.
Did these midfielders ever score a goal for Portsmouth or not?
This would be an excellent signing for Portsmouth and a real coup if they pull it off this summer. Jordan Gabriel is exactly the right profile of player you would want Pompey to be going for this summer with him already having a promotion from League One on his CV and also having a lot of potential to be developed further in coming years.
Having starred at times for Blackpool in the third tier last term, Gabriel is someone that Danny Cowley knows he would be able to trust to perform consistently for his side next season. He would greatly enhance the quality of Portsmouth’s options in his position and it is a no-brainer to try and get a player like that if they are available.
Blackpool are keen to re-sign him and Nottingham Forest might also want to keep him, and so it is not going to be easy for Portsmouth to make this happen. However, it would send out a real statement of their intent if they were to secure his services.
Gabriel is a player that I would be excited about signing if I were connected with Portsmouth and I think they should do what they can to try and make this deal happen.