Portsmouth boss: Curtis thriving after Irish head start

Kenny Jackett credits Ronan Curtis' Irish preparation for his remarkable instant impact.

Monday, 10th September 2018, 7:03 pm
Updated Monday, 10th September 2018, 7:13 pm
Ronan Curtis has been flying for Pompey. Picture: Joe Pepler

The forward is in the frame for a Republic of Ireland debut against Poland tonight as his whirlwind progress continues.

Curtis departed Derry City mid-season for Fratton Park in June.

With the SSE Airtricity League campaign starting in February, the 22-year-old had scored eight goals and been a first-team regular by the time of his Pompey switch.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Ronan Curtis has been flying for Pompey. Picture: Joe Pepler

It's that match fitness Jackett believes has given Curtis a head start during the early days of his Blues career.

And Pompey are reaping the rewards.

Jackett said: '˜I have been pleased with Ronan, he has a lot of ability.

'˜He'd had two weeks off by the time of our pre-season, that's all, and it looked like he had been playing football when maybe the others hadn't.

'˜Whether that gave him an advantage or not I don't know. Hopefully it doesn't project late on where he burns out.

'˜But he started the season very confidently from day one and was a reflection of the fact he had been playing summer football in Ireland, hopefully giving him the confidence to hit the ground running.

'˜In his first league match against Luton, he played through the middle and provided a goal for Jamal with a really good cut back.

'˜He has since settled down on the left of that front three and started the season really well.

'˜At the moment I see him on the left, but I do think he has the flexibility at the right time to give us pace down the middle.

'˜We'll see how the season develops, he has made a very good start to his career here, right the way from pre-season.

'˜There have been goals and assists already '“ it looks like he'll be an asset for us.'

Pompey's last international player at senior level was Mustapha Dumbuya.

The right-back appeared for Sierra Leone in October 2012 during a brief Fratton Park stay.

While, in terms of UK and Republic of Ireland national sides, Curtis would be Pompey's first since Liam Lawrence in May 2011.

Jackett added: '˜Ronan is confident, he is spiky, he's competitive and he wants to win.

'˜He brings a lot of personality, but good players should, they should have a lot of personality.

'˜If you've got a good squad then they can project their personality.'