Can new Portsmouth manager Danny Cowley take advantage of a favourable fixture list?

by The Sack Race / 19 March 2021, 18:08

Portsmouth have wasted little time in finding a replacement for Kenny Jackett after the club named Danny Cowley as their new manager on a short-term contract until the end of the season.

Jackett was sent packing on Sunday following the club’s defeat on penalties to League Two Salford City in the Football League Trophy Final.

Joe Gallen was then placed in temporary charge of the first team for a 1-0 defeat to Peterborough, while the likes of Daniel Stendel, Neil Harris, and Cowley emerged as contenders for the post.

Cowley - who was also linked with Charlton - shot into the odds-on favourite on Wednesday, then bookmakers began to suspend the betting completely as reports surfaced that a verbal agreement had been made.

Reports which have now been confirmed as Danny, alongside his managerial partner and brother Nicky, have arrived at Fratton Park in their first post since leaving Huddersfield back in July.

“This is a club with unbelievable tradition, so the board didn’t need to sell it to us,” Cowley told the club’s official website. “We’re proud and privileged to be here.

“Hopefully they saw two hard-working people who love the game and we’re delighted to be at Pompey.

“We always have the ambition of leaving a club in a better position than we found it. We’ll be doing everything in order to achieve that here.”

Cowley previously won three promotions in his first job at Concord Rangers, steered Braintree Town into the National League play-offs, jetted Lincoln from non-league to League One, then saved Huddersfield from relegation out of the Championship last term.

The 42-year-old will now be tasked with securing a League One play-off place with Portsmouth; a side that were top at Christmas but have since dropped down to 10th, 16 points adrift of leaders Hull and three points off the top-six.

After facing Paul Cook’s Ipswich (7th) on Saturday, Portsmouth's final 11 games are against teams that are currently situated in the bottom-half of the League One table - three of whom are in the relegation zone.

There are no easy games of course, especially during such a crunch stage of a campaign when tensions rise and the nerves are jangling, but make no mistake about it this favourable fixture list means Cowley has an ideal chance to propel Pompey into the play-offs.

Cowley will look to galvanise the club by tapping into the passionate fanbase. The Cowley’s are managers for the people, who have done the hard graft and built up an impressive CV since their days working their socks off in the non-league pyramid.

They will bring buckets of belief, hard work, determination and a razor like focus which supporters will hope results in a prized promotion up to the Championship.

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