From under fire to manager of the month contender - Kenny Jackett's superb Portsmouth turnaround

Kingsmeadow – so often the portent for Pompey managerial demises.

Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 8:00 am

Guy Whittingham lasted one more match, Andy Awford lingered for a further 24 days, Blues life does not fare well for those to have suffered defeat at the home of AFC Wimbledon.

Yet Kenny Jackett has defied convention. Now he’s been nominated for the Sky Bet League One Manager of the Month Award for November.

Following a last-gasp loss at Wimbledon in October, courtesy of Terell Thomas’ stoppage-time header, calls for Jackett’s head were at their most vocal.

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Upon the final whistle, he was flanked by a steward during a lonely walk towards the changing rooms, chants of ‘We want Jackett out’ accompanying his progress.

Since that uncomfortable moment, the Blues have embarked on a remarkable 10-match unbeaten stretch in all competitions.

There has been progress in the FA Cup, headway in the Trophy and a seven-place rise in League One.

Indeed, in November alone, the once under-fire boss registered three league successes plus a home draw with Oxford United.

Kenny Jackett has transformed Pompey fortunes since the low of a last-gasp defeat at AFC Wimbledon on October 19. Picture: Joe Pepler

It’s that return which has warranted his shortlisting, alongside Wycombe’s Gareth Ainsworth, Graham Coughlan from Bristol Rovers and Rotherham’s Paul Warne.

Incidentally, Warne’s Millers lost 3-2 at Fratton Park during that period.

Jackett may continue to have detractors, but there can be no denying he has transformed the Blues’ fortunes since that Kingsmeadow low point.

At that stage, Pompey were eight points off the top six – now they are three. In addition, they possess a game in hand on five of the teams situated above.

Admittedly, FA Cup wins have arrived against two non-league opponents.

Similarly, home progress over Northampton in the Trophy is to be expected, considering their League Two placing.

However, there have been four League One wins and three draws since the Wimbledon body blow, representing an impressive response.

Now that same manager is in the frame to receive League One’s Manager of the Month.