Kits just needs a little help to hit top form

Dave Kitson
Dave Kitson
Former Colchester United striker Macauley Bonne

Edinburgh: Pompey target not for sale

Have your say

Dave Kitson applauded moves to bring more strikers to Fratton Park and insisted: They can bring out the best in me.

Pompey have been doggedly pursuing Burnley’s Martin Paterson for more than a month, as Steve Cotterill attempts to strengthen his squad.

The Blues boss has made recruiting a striker his top priority – and would also like a second.

Publicly, the Clarets have insisted Paterson is not for sale.

But Pompey are not giving up the chase.

In the meantime, Kitson is looking on hoping a deal for Paterson can be reached.

The former Stoke man is desperate for new striking talent at the Blues.

He believes he can thrive in a two-man strikeforce, an option which has generally been lacking for Cotterill so far.

Last season, Kitson scored eight goals as essentially a lone central striker.

And he is eager for the arrival of a partner-in-crime to help him recapture the form which once saw him score regularly for Reading in the Premier League.

He said: ‘I know Steve is working really hard on bringing more players to compliment what we have done.

‘His priority has to be getting in strikers, it just has to.

‘I will do whatever Steve asks me to do. I will always question it but I will do it.

‘However, I am actually a big believer in 4-4-2. It has been proven time and time again in this league that if you have got that system you will do well and win the majority of your games.

‘There is a time and a place for 4-5-1. But as a lone striker, I think you need help.

‘You can’t be in the box all the time, sitting at the base of the diamond all the time, closing down full-backs all the time, coming back to head out corners and then getting up the pitch.

‘You can’t do it, not all the time.

‘Andy Griffin once described me a finisher off of moves.

‘I come in, link up, get the ball wide, get in the box and finish it.

‘That’s my career, which I thought he summed up quite nicely.

‘To get the best out of me as a striker you will need two wingers and the ethos behind the team to let them get the crosses in.

‘It’s very simple play but very effective.

‘I won’t criticise a change of formation, but the most successful part of my career is two up front and two on the wings.

‘Now if you are telling me that is not available then not a problem.

‘I am not going to kick up a stink or ask to leave, I will get on with it, I am paid to play football and will do the best I possibly can.

‘I will not sit and sulk. I’ll get on with it and do what I always do, give 100 per cent and try to create something myself.

‘But I would prefer to play alongside another striker.’

Kitson admits he, along with his manager and team-mates, became frustrated by the lack of numbers last season.

Pompey possessed the smallest squad in the Football League, yet still managed to finish 16th.

It was that disadvantage which forced David Nugent to play largely wide on the left, robbing Kitson of a strike partner.

And the ex-Reading man believes that affected his game.

He added: ‘It was frustrating, I lost my cool in the changing room a couple of times.

‘That was unfair because everyone was trying their hardest and having to do what they were having to do in the situation.

‘Standing in the box I know David Nugent is going to come inside and shoot, then follow the ball in with the keeper saving it nine or 10 times.

‘You don’t lose heart but are well aware it is going to be tough to score goals.

‘I don’t miss chances. I am not being big headed but I don’t have many shots over the course of a season.

‘I think I have always been known for having one of the highest goals-to-shots ratios.

‘That is not to say I am fantastic and better than anyone else, because I am not.

‘It’s simply because I don’t have many shots and when I do they tend to be right in front of goal.

‘David would cut in and shoot from 25 yards generally and did all right, hit the bar a couple of times and scored some decent goals as well.

‘It’s a shame we didn’t have a left winger to allow Dave and I in the box because we would have done very well.

‘But needs must, there was nothing we could do about it.’