Jackett: Refreshed Portsmouth striker can deliver what I want

A rejuvenated Brett Pitman has been backed to be central to Pompey's success this season.

Monday, 1st October 2018, 6:51 pm
Updated Monday, 1st October 2018, 8:09 pm
Brett Pitman is set to start at Coventry. Picture: Joe Pepler

Kenny Jackett has no doubt his arch poacher can provide the link-up play he's demanding from his strikers.

Pitman is set to continue at Coventry after impressing with a man-of-the-match display at Rochdale on Saturday.

The 30-year-old scored one goal and made another on his first league outing for eight weeks at Spotland.

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Brett Pitman is set to start at Coventry. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett feels the striker has offered a freshness coming back into his starting XI.

And the Blues boss has challenged his skipper to maintain the standards he's set.

Jackett said: '˜Brett's been out of the side and shown a good response to not playing as much as last season so far.

'˜I do think we've benefitted from that freshness as well.

Pompey boss Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler

'˜The bit he does bring is goalscoring and it's terrific. Don't underestimate that.

'˜I don't underestimate that but I also know unless your centre-forward gets hold of the ball you aren't going to get up and around the box enough times for him to score.

'˜Many goalscorers are in the same situation. If you get the ball in the box enough they will score. That's 100 per cent the case.

'˜Similarly, there's a process to getting the ball into the final third. There's a process to getting into the opposition's box with quality.

'˜That does result in players needing to be good enough to move us up the pitch on a regular basis.

'˜He's on good form and set some good standards.

'˜As ever, when you're striker like Brett, your confidence comes from goalscoring.'

Jackett has been demanding more from Pitman's all-round game this season, and feels that he showed at Rochdale he can contribute plenty to his side's general play.

He added: '˜He played well and it was a key second goal, which was very well taken.

'˜You can't underestimate that, but, overall his build-up play was good.

'˜That's something he has to keep doing.

'˜When he does contribute we look a better side.

'˜He has the ability to get hold of the ball and bring people into the game.

'˜A platform, with the way we play, is needed.

'˜Whether it's Oli Hawkins or Brett, with their back to goal they do need win headers, get hold of the ball and make it stick.

'˜They need to make sure they can be the start of our constructive moves.

'˜Generally when we get the ball into him with quality we can attack with pace and get behind sides. We have that ability.

'˜On Saturday, I was pleased with his overall contribution. He won headers brought people into the game and got hold of the ball.

'˜He wasn't trying any flicks, wasn't loose with possession and got across his defender.

'˜In the system we play it's vital our centre-forward does that.'