Harry Redknapp has been looking to boost his squad ahead of Portsmouth’s first assault on European opponents, and has finally sealed a deal to give his side more firepower.
Israeli teenager Ben Sahar has joined the Fratton Park outfit on a six-month loan deal from Stamford Bridge. Having previously been on loan at teams like QPR and Sheffield Wednesday, the 18-year-old will have to step up to compete in the Premiership and the UEFA Cup.
He now joins players like Jermaine Defoe, David Nugent and Kanu in jostling for the striking berths on the South coast:
I’m ready for the challenge of being part of such a big club, like Portsmouth.
I want to be part of it and to show that I deserve to be here.
Although only having Championship and Carling Cup experience in England, Sahar has been a fully-fledged international since 17, and recently played against England. This means that he has faced some tough, talented, experienced opposition before, putting him in good stead for the UEFA Cup, a competition which Sahar admits was key in his move:
It was a factor. We have seen Portsmouth are a great team who can win trophies.
They are now in Europe and that will be a big challenge as well.
How much we can expect from a teenager who only scored 3 goals in 21 Championship games last season is yet to be seen, but much has been said of the player who has yet to show his true potential. Perhaps he can do it at Fratton Park, but to expect him to explode would be foolish. I remember Jérémie Aliadière being talked up a lot at 18…