From fans calling for his head to being named man of the match - Portsmouth boss reflects on tumultuous journey as side continue promotion charge
Kenny Jackett revelled in the emotional rollercoaster of being Pompey boss as his buoyant side continued their promotion charge.
The Blues surged back into League One’s top six with club record-equalling eighth win on the bounce as Sunderland were dismissed by a second-half super show.
Fratton Park reverberated to the manager’s name and he was even named man of the match by sponsors with his side unbeaten in 2020.
It’s a far cry from Pompey’s early-season woes when supporters called for the manager’s head as his team struggled.
Jackett told how he’s trying to keep an even hand on his emotions but the journey is proving a tumultuous affair.
He said: ‘It was a little bit of fun (being named man of the match).
‘I don’t think I ever got man of the match in my playing days! That’s my my first one ever and I’ll definitely get some ribbing!
‘As a manager you have to be aware of the extremes when it comes to supporters and in general.
‘The emotion of it is fantastic. The highs and lows are there.
‘When you’re working in it, though, I guess you have to take some type of levelness, if you like.
‘You’re disappointed when it’s now going well and you’re happy when it’s going well. Of course you are. You are.
‘But you still have to try to take an edge of it really in terms of the realism.
‘When you’ve been in it for a while you also know there’s not much of a difference between the actual performances.
‘There is a difference, but not much of a difference.’
Jackett called on his players to stay focussed on the factors which are making a difference to their soaring form since the new year.
He added: ‘We need to realise what it is that’s helping us. It is a good run that we’re on.
‘It’s a little bit of everything but there’s a better work rate, a better attitude and better reaction to things like adversity.
‘In terms of individuals you’re looking at things like delivery and Ronan Curtis is a key player for us.
‘He’s a good player and he showed that because he was a constant threat.
‘There’s some players bedding in and gaining confidence.
‘Andy Cannon has benefitted from a run. He was excellent and played very well.
‘But if you analysed it and came up with a list it would probably be really boring and mundane things - team spirit, attitude, hard work and preparation.’