Mahlon Romeo has looked impressive for Portsmouth so far this campaign and has already become a mainstay in the side – but he very nearly didn’t make the move to Fratton Park in the summer, as reported by The News.
With Millwall looking to send the player out on a short-term deal, the 26-year-old opted for Pompey and has looked bright ever since his move, featuring 15 times for the club so far this season.
Romeo had a brief stint in League One with his parent club as a youngster and looked solid at third tier level all the way back then and he has since gained even more experience by playing nearly 150 games at Championship level too.
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Back in League One then, he is now once again proving to be an impressive addition to Portsmouth’s backline – but he could very nearly have swapped the blue of Pompey for their rivals instead over the course of the summer.
That’s because Portsmouth boss Danny Cowley has revealed to The News that there was interest from elsewhere in the division over summer, with Ipswich Town keen to bring him in, as well as Sunderland.
Speaking about their move for the player, Cowley said: “We didn’t anticipate Mahlon would become available to us. I thought he was going to Ipswich and there was even Sunderland, but he wanted to stay down south. He became available and it was a great deal for us.”
It means that whilst Portsmouth have benefitted from his addition to their defence for the rest of the campaign, Ipswich and Sunderland are now both left wondering what might have been with the player. With Romeo putting in some superb displays for the Fratton Park side, it will have left both teams distraught to have not been able to secure his signature.
Mahlon Romeo has looked bright this season and Portsmouth will be delighted to have wrapped up a short-term deal for him. There’s no doubt they will want to keep him on a more permanent basis but that’s something that can be sorted out later on down the line.
If he keeps impressing, he could be one of their most important players this season. If that is the case, then the Tractor Boys and the Black Cats will certainly be in disbelief that they let one of their targets join a division rival and excel for them.