Jackett not concerned by Portsmouth fatigue

Fatigue will not influence Pompey team changes in pursuit of victory over Gillingham.

Thursday, 4th October 2018, 3:58 pm
Updated Friday, 5th October 2018, 2:34 am
Kenny Jackett surveying Pompey's latest win on Tuesday night. Picture: Philip Oldham

That is the verdict of Kenny Jackett, who is adamant he cannot sense any tiredness in his undefeated Blues.

Pompey's boss has maintained a consistent selection policy during the run which has catapulted the team to League One's summit, particularly in the past month.

A gruelling midweek victory at Coventry arrived in the midst of a testing spell of five matches in 15 days for the promotion-hunting side.

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Kenny Jackett surveying Pompey's latest win on Tuesday night. Picture: Philip Oldham

Jackett, though, pinpoints February as the time to be concerned about fatigue.

In the meantime, he believes his players can cope with the demands expected.

He said: '˜There are times when you can just see on someone that it might be time to step out.

'˜I would say that's more about individuals rather than wholesale changes. In the main, your squad at this stage of the season should be fresh and should be okay.

'˜There are always individual situations, such as people's health, pre-season, things like that. But at this stage they should be the minority '“ the majority of the group should be ready to play twice a week.

'˜From February onwards that can vary, once you get into 30-40 games you do see a slightly different game at that stage of the season, right across the country. I think fatigue plays a part in that period.

'˜That shouldn't be the case two months into the season '“ they've just had seven weeks off!

'˜As you get to know your players better and their character you know whether they are on it or not.

'˜There may be one or two who need resting, or maybe not. I am not looking to make changes just because we need them through freshness.'

In recent weeks, Brett Pitman has dislodged Oli Hawkins, while fit-again Jack Whatmough reclaimed his spot off Christian Burgess.

Otherwise Jackett has kept faith in the team which continues to excel.

He added: '˜Another thing is if it's a third game in a week.

'˜Generally, the travelling can take its toll a little bit and it's not always a physical thing either, but mentally. People look a little jaded and half-a-yard down, it's not a conscious thing.

'˜With three games in a week and the last is away from home, like Donaster earlier in the season, it is pretty tough then.

'˜But for us it's not applicable this week, we have a home game.'

                             '“ NEIL ALLEN