Jack Compton has been backed to continue his ‘surprising’ start to his Pompey career.
The pacy Blues winger has impressed Michael Appleton with his performances so far this term, although the Pompey boss wants to see a better end product.
But Compton offers genuine width and the ability to get past opponents – something Appleton knew all about, having worked with the 24-year-old during their time at West Brom.
Appleton said: ‘I’ve been pleasantly surprised by Jack.
‘In my head when I was putting a squad together back in May or June, Jack was going to be more of an impact player – a bit like Ashley Harris at the minute.
‘Jack is very direct, he likes to get on the outside of defenders and get his crosses in.
‘He’s getting the idea now that I want him to mix his game up and cause the full-back a different problem. He will get better as well.’
While Compton, who started his career in Pompey’s youth ranks, is a bit of a throw back as an old-fashioned winger, his final ball can be frustrating.
But Appleton believes that is down to him rushing his delivery at times.
The Blues boss said: ‘As daft as it sounds, he probably wants to cross the ball too early.
‘There have been times where I am saying to him “commit a defender because you have got the ability to beat people”.
‘But it’s nice to have a natural wide player and it’s about getting that balance right.
‘Jack is an old-fashioned winger but he has to make sure his concentration levels are spot on when we’re out of possession.
‘And he has improved on that.’
– STEVE WILSON