Who's Next?

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 31 May 2017

Mark Catlin has confirmed that the process in hiring Paul Cook's successor is already underway.

SkyBet have already made Kenny Jackett the overwhelming early favourite with odds of 1/6 to become the next Pompey manager. It's said that the former Millwall manager is a popular choice amongst the powers-that-be at Fratton Park and a quick look at his CV would explain why.

Jackett has experience of getting teams promoted from League One. He won the 2010 play-off final with Millwall and subsequently took the Lions to an F.A Cup semi-final in 2013.

When he was appointed as Wolves manager in the summer of the same year, he took the relegated club straight back up to the second tier with a record 103 points and then fell just short of the Championship play-offs.

The 55-year-old has also experienced League Two promotion with Swansea and laid the foundations there for their success as they rose up the divisions. The only small blot on his copybook would be a short stint at Rotherham this season, where he resigned from the club after just five matches.

But other than that, Jackett has left every club he has been at in a better position than when he took over. He has a proven track record and would actually be an upgrade on Paul Cook if he was appointed.

If the new man isn't to be Jackett then Michael Appleton is the bookies' current second-favourite for the job at 6/1.

That would be an interesting appointment given that he received a portion of the vitriol currently directed at Cook after the way he left Pompey for Blackpool in 2012.

Still, could you really blame him given the absolute mess the club was in at the time? He has matured as a manager since his rookie days at Portsmouth and has done good things at Oxford. I personally wouldn't be against seeing 'Appy back at the helm as he'd have something to offer.

Paul Tisdale of Exeter (6/1) would be a natural replacement for Cook. They share the same football philosophy and it wasn't long ago that the second-longest serving manager in the Football League got the Grecians promoted and led them to an 8th placed finish in League One on a shoestring budget.

The Cowleys at Lincoln (12/1) is another appointment which has been mooted given their achievements of winning the Conference outright but more impressively reaching the F.A Cup quarter-final with a non-league side having beaten Brighton and Burnley along the way. It would be a bold move but would they want to leave the north?

Gary Bowyer (12/1) worked wonders at Blackpool to get them promoted despite the Oystons' ownership having already staved off relegation with Blackburn under equally awful owners in Venkys. It'd be interesting to see what he could do at a steady club and with some money to spend.

An outside bet would be Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink at 16/1. The charismatic former Chelsea striker led Burton Albion to the League Two title and left the Brewers top of League One when he departed for an ill-fated spell at QPR.

Some names which have been sounded out by some fans are simply unrealistic as there is no way Pompey would have the attraction (being in League One) or the money to bring someone like Alan Pardew, Garry Monk or Brian McDermott to Fratton Park.

On the other hand, if a horrific appointment such as Tim Sherwood, Stuart Pearce or Warren Joyce was made then I, along with many others, would be demanding our season ticket money back!

Still, the latest news is that there has already been contact between Portsmouth and Kenny Jackett with both parties interested in making a deal.

It would be a superb appointment if it did go ahead.

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