Pompey ready to raid big boys

Daniel Alfei
Daniel Alfei

POMPEY are ready to plunder more Premier League sides for their loan gems.

And the Blues believe they have a network of contacts at the top end of the game to boost their playing resources over the second half of the season.

But assistant manager Anthony Williams warned of the perils of going too far down the route of nabbing emerging stars from top-flight sides.

Daniel Alfei arrived on a month’s loan from Swansea this week with boss Richie Barker given the green light to strengthen this squad.

Williams has a background in international football with Wales and feels there is a chance for Pompey to bring in other exciting talents.

He said: ‘I coached Wales under-17s, 19s and 21s for three seasons. Danny came through the system and there are quite a few good players who did the same.

‘There was the likes of Aaron Ramsey, who’s not bad, and Ched Evans, Sam Vokes, Simon Church. The group I had when I first went was fantastic. Jonathan Williams at Palace was another one.

‘So you see players at top-end clubs who haven’t found their way yet and are looking for an opportunity.

‘With us being the club of our size in the league we’re in we could be the ideal opportunity for them.

‘We’ve got connections at every club in the country so it’s a case of going through them all.

‘It’s a good learning curve for Premier League development players. There’s nothing better than playing in front of a massive crowd here if they are then going back to their parent club to play.

‘This is an appealing place to come. If I was at a Premier League club, looking at where I needed to go to get my experience, you’d fancy coming here and playing in front of that crowd every week.

‘It’s a good learning curve for them to come here, do well and maybe stay a while.’

Alfei joins Trevor Carson, who agreed a loan until the end of the season, as Pompey’s temporary signings.

Under league rules, five loan players are allowed in the match-day squad, although there is no restriction on the number of loan signings you can make.

Williams believes clubs like Pompey have to be wary about how they use the loan system, as they also look for out-of -contract players.

He said: ‘You can’t go too far down the line because you will fill up the squad with youngsters.

‘There has to be a blend there somewhere and you can have only five loans at one time but we’re sifting through them.

‘We’ve watched the under-21 games and reserve games at a higher level.

‘It’s difficult to find players who are out of contract in January.

‘The end of the season is different.

‘But hopefully we can get one or two permanent ones as well.’