For Kenny Jackett, the improvement in Adam May has been obvious.
And the Blues boss is keen to extend the midfielder’s contract to retain him at Fratton Park.
Adam has a good range of passing and shooting ability. You don’t always see that necessarily in a game, but that will comeKenny Jackett
May won’t be considered for Saturday’s visit of Doncaster as he serves a one-match ban.
His stoppage-time dismissal following two bookable offences brought a first-team comeback against Shrewsbury to an abrupt end.
It represented a 15th appearance of the campaign for the 20-year-old, who has stepped up into League One following last term’s Sutton United loan spell.
And while he is sidelined this weekend, May continues to impress Pompey’s boss.
Jackett said: ‘Personally, I think Adam has shown good progress from the start of the season.
‘He has continued to improve – there is no doubt about that – and I think he’s capable of making the improvement to becoming a good Portsmouth player.
‘I have seen an improvement from his last run of games and I think, generally, there is somebody who will continue to improve – and at quite a good rate too.
‘Adam has a lot of composure on the ball and can pick a pass. He has a lot of strengths, but with the skills he possesses he doesn’t always impose himself on games.
‘He has a good range of passing and shooting ability. You don’t always see that necessarily in a game, but that will come.
‘He is big enough and strong enough to run, compete, win second balls, mark people, track, impose himself on games.
‘If he does that side of the game then his range of passing and shooting, which are very good technically, will show more than they are at the moment.
‘It is a big leap. He was in the National League on a plastic pitch last year, but it’s okay, that’s why you have young players.
‘Whether they are your young players or players taken from another club, they have to have that opportunity.
‘Other clubs are going through the same process and trying to get young players to reach their maximum, but Adam has shown good strides this year and I definitely feel he has potential.
‘He is out of contract in the summer, but I don’t think there is a problem that way – I do see him having a future.’
May made 24 appearances during a successful National League loan spell with Sutton last season.
Earlier this campaign, Jackett handed him an eight-game run in the Blues’ side, but since mid-September appearances have been sporadic.
Instead Ben Close has established himself in the centre of midfield, with May often serving from the bench as he continues to adjust to League One.
Jackett added: ‘In professional football there is pressure.
‘The better you do, the more pressure there is going to be. The bigger the club, the more pressure there is going to be. And you want to be successful.
‘You always want the backing but you can’t be too long, you can’t be taking years and years and years, that cannot be the case.
‘There has to be a relatively quick transition from looking off it to being able to establish yourself. It is a process that can work, definitely.’