Portsmouth boss delivers message to QPR loanee

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David Wheeler has been told: Your chance will come.

And Kenny Jackett has promised his other fringe players opportunities to make a Pompey impact will arrive.

Pompey winger David Wheeler. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey winger David Wheeler. Picture: Joe Pepler

The boss has sent a message to Wheeler, with the winger one of a number of established pros outside the Blues’ starting XI as they set the pace in League One.

The 27-year-old has been restricted to starts in the Carabao Cup and Checkatrade Trophy since arriving on loan for the season from QPR.

It’s been a total of just 67 league minutes off the bench for the winger since dropping down from the Championship.

Wheeler said earlier this month Jackett could keep his 23-man squad happy by maintaining the kind of open dialogue with his players he’s operated with this season.

The manager feels such an approach along with transparency with his men will prove crucial.

Jackett said: ‘In Dave’s case, he’d started with the group and, in wide areas, Ronan Curtis and Jamal Lowe were already here and were in the side.

‘We played them from early in pre-season those two and they were figuring.

‘Dave knows he has to push people out and wait for his chance.

‘Having said that, Dave Wheeler is a good player – and he will get in.

‘A lot goes off what was said when you go to the club and the first meeting.

‘This is a club I consider to be a very good one and there will be competition for places.

‘Myself as a manager, I know I’m not going to do it with 11. You need more than that to be successful.

‘They do need encouragement and they do need to be clear about what they need to do when they get their chance. That’s a big thing.

‘Yes, there is open dialogue but I do expect professionalism.

‘We’re all employed by Portsmouth Football Club – and they have to come first.’

Pompey’s other loan players have been peripheral figures of late. 

Ben Thompson hasn’t started the past four games, Joe Mason restricted to two substitute appearances and Andre Green is on the treatment table following knee surgery after two starts.

Jackett added: ‘They will (be called upon).

‘I hope in some ways that they’re not because it means we won’t get any injuries and we’ll keep winning.

‘But squad planning is a big part of a successful football club. Massive part.

‘You want to be prepared for all eventualities.

‘May, June and July are the big ones, and maybe August to a degree.

‘That’s where you need to do your work.

‘You can’t tell what’s going to happen in November, but you can be as well balanced and as strong as you can to manage in that period.’