Portsmouth midfielder Tom Lowery has suffered another long-term injury setback, which requires surgery and will see him sidelined for a significant amount of time, but who could the club target as a possible replacement?
The 25-year-old will be out of action for the next three to five months, depending on the depth of injury that Lowery has sustained. This will be made clear once the midfielder undergoes surgery on Thursday, with John Mousinho’s men hopeful of a faster return.
If Lowery is ruled out for five months, he will miss over half of the League One season and will almost certainly cause John Mousinho to dive into the transfer market in search of a potential replacement, whether that’s on loan or as a permanent deal.
Pompey have kicked off their 2023/24 campaign in fine form, drawing 1-1 to Bristol Rovers on the opening day, before picking up league wins against Leyton Orient and Exeter City, keeping two clean sheets in the process and scoring five goals. The club also cruised past Forest Green Rovers in round one of the EFL Cup, winning 3-1.
Manager John Mousinho spoke to BBC Radio Solent after Tuesday’s win against Exeter, where he confirmed that the club may have to look at replacements for Lowery this month depending on the length of time that he is sidelined.
With that being said, let’s take a look at five potential replacements for the 25-year-old this summer…
Tommy Leigh – Accrington Stanley
Beginning this list we have a player who has already been linked with a move to the League One side, which is Accrington Stanley’s Tommy Leigh. The 23-year-old is a local lad, having been born in Portsmouth and has already featured heavily for the club this season.
Leigh has featured in all four of the club’s matches so far, picking up an assist during the club’s 3-0 opening-day victory against Newport County. Last season, he made 50 appearances in all competitions, scoring 12 goals and assisting a further four.
He is available for a small six-figure fee and would continue to boost the club’s midfield options going into the remainder of the campaign, which is why I believe that John Mousinho’s side should go back in for the midfielder.
Isaac Hutchinson – Walsall
Walsall fans won’t be happy with this, but their star man Isaac Hutchinson would be a terrific addition to the League One side. The 23-year-old was born in Eastbourne and broke through with Southend United, before earning a move to Derby County, where he stayed until his release in 2021.
Following his release, he contributed to four goals in 19 games for Crawley Town, before returning to the Midlands with the Saddlers. He’s made 57 appearances for the club, contributing to 15 goals and like Tommy Leigh, has also featured in every match for the club this season.
I am not sure what Hutchinson’s price tag would be, but he would be an excellent replacement for Lowery and has arguably done enough at Walsall to justify a move into League One.
Dominic Gape – free agent
If Portsmouth were looking for a cheaper alternative, former Wycombe midfielder Dominic Gape could be right up their street. The 28-year-old left the Chairboys in the summer but is yet to be snapped up by a new club, despite initial interest from Championship side Queens Park Rangers.
Gape made over 200 first-team appearances at Adams Park, but due to injuries he was reduced to just 16 appearances last season. However, he did contribute to a goal, when he netted for Wycombe during a 3-0 win against Barnsley in a game that he was also captain of the side.
The midfielder would add more experience into the club’s midfield whilst Lowery was sidelined and he has continued to prove that he has what it takes to succeed at League One level. He would also be the cheaper alternative to a player contracted to another side.
Dennis Adeniran – free agent
Staying with the free agent theme, former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Dennis Adeniran is another player that could be on John Mousinho’s shopping list this summer, providing a replacement for Tom Lowery is required by the club.
The 24-year-old broke through with Everton and featured for Fulham before landing his move to Hillsborough. He made 51 appearances for the club, scoring seven and assisting three which meant that he averaged a goal contribution every five matches.
What makes that more impressive is the fact that several of those appearances were off the bench, making his goal contributions a lot more important. He recently helped his side to promotion back to the Championship and could provide vital experience for the remainder of his teammates at Fratton Park.
Jamie Bowden – free agent
Given Lowery could return quicker than expected, a cheap option is another low-risk strategy that John Mousinho and his transfer team could dive into this summer and the perfect addition could be former Tottenham midfielder Jamie Bowden.
The 22-year-old is a product of the Tottenham Hotspur academy as well as having a brief loan spell with Oldham Athletic during the first half of the 2021/22 campaign.
Bowden is currently training with Spanish side Deportivo, in a view to earn a contract. However, if a club like Portsmouth showed interest in his services, it could persuade the midfielder to return to England and play at Fratton Park.
Portsmouth fans, would you take any of these players at your club?
Also, feel free to click here and read about another one of Portsmouth’s players who is the subject of an international battle!