Local lad after Pompey starting role for keeps

Brandon Haunstrup has targeted cementing his left-back berth for the rest of the season.

Monday, 18th December 2017, 9:00 am
Brandon Haunstrup in action against Bury. Picture: Joe Pepler

The Pompey Academy graduate feels he has what it takes to become the club’s first-choice player in the role over the remainder of the campaign.

Haunstrup helped the Blues to their fourth clean sheet on the bounce and fifth in six games with a 1-0 success over Bury.

The 21-year-old has started the past four games as his Fratton Park career accelerates.

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Haunstrup can feel his belief building as the side grow in confidence on their winning run.

The Waterlooville talent made his 12th start of the season as his emergence continues under Kenny Jackett.

And he is now looking to see that run continue.

Haunstrup said: ‘I’m enjoying my football and playing game after game. That’s all I want to do.

‘I have to try to sustain that. I want to stay in there for the rest of the season.

‘Every game I play I’m getting more confident. I just think that’s natural.

‘The same goes for the team. The more we play together, the more confident we’re going to get.’

It’s not been all plain sailing for Haunstrup over the past couple of seasons.

He made just a single appearance last term, as he found himself behind player-of-the-season Enda Stevens.

Haunstrup explained there was no room to show consternation as he had to bide his time and wait for a chance.

He added: ‘When you come in you have to feel like a part of it.

‘If you don’t then you haven’t got the right mentality.

‘If you sit there and sulk because you’re out of the team that’s going to have a damaging effect on your performance.’

Haunstrup has shown his attacking qualities and ability to provide decent supply from the left in his run of games this term.

He feels looking to use wide areas will always be the route to Pompey enjoying success this term.

Haunstrup said: ‘We were losing it a bit in the middle third at times, so if we can get it out wide we look dangerous getting the crosses in.’

Saturday’s victory over Bury was Pompey’s seventh win in eight outings and saw them register their fourth clean sheet on the bounce.

It was also their fifth 1-0 success in their recent winning run.

Despite a lot of games being tight, Haunstrup believes there is goals in this current side. And he sees no reason why the margin of victory can’t become wider.

Haunstrup said: ‘We’re getting better game by game.

‘We’re picking up clean sheets and are finding a way to go on and win games.

‘The manager is happy with the current squad – and he has to be with the way we’re winning games.

‘I felt like we could have been the team to go on and win by two or three in the end.

‘Maybe we should have seen it out a bit more comfortably than we did.

‘But it was a solid clean sheet and it never felt like we were in danger.

‘I think we have got goals in us, it’s just finding a way to break down a team.’