Is there a way out for Portsmouth under Kenny Jackett? your questions answered after the disappointing Papa John's Trophy final loss to Salford

Your questions have been piling in after Pompey’s defeat to Salford City in the Papa John’s Trophy final at Wembley.

Saturday, 13th March 2021, 9:42 pm

The Blues’ dreadful form continued as they lost to the League Two outfit on penalties following a 0-0 draw after extra-time.

Pompey could hardly bemoan the scoreline and got what they deserved against the Ammies.

Unsurprisingly, further pressure has fallen on the already under-fire Kenny Jackett with swathes of fans calling for his head.

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We’ve answered your questions on Jackett’s future, players needing to take responsibility and if Pompey can even get out of this current rut...

This team seems to have hit rock bottom, is there a way out under Kenny Jackett?

Duncan Sadler

The feeling of anger after Northampton has turned into indifference and despondence at Wembley.

Pompey applaud Salford as they lift the Papa John's Trophy following their victory on penalties at Wembley. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett is becoming more and more under fire after each defeat, with Pompey now winning just once in eight games – and losing six.

Things are bleak and, at the moment, they don’t look like they’ll change whatsoever.

As we know, Jackett has the backing of the owners for the rest of the season as he’s out of contract at the end of the season.

That could change, though, should Pompey slip further away from the play-offs.

This content is provided in association with the University of Portsmouth.

Confidence is at rock bottom, which is a scary proposition heading to Peterborough on Tuesday.

The one way out might be to going back to what Jackett knows – which is his favoured 4-2-3-1 formation.

In the second half when the subs were introduced, the players seemed to know their roles better as they were more defined.

Ben Close was more streetwise than George Byers in holding midfield, Ronan Curtis more natural than Harvey White as a left-winger and Lee Brown provided more of an outlet than Charlie Daniels at left-back.

Things might not be pretty but the switch might at least start yielding better results.

Knew it was a mistake to play this game at this stage of the season. How on earth are the team going to lift themselves now for two massive promotion games against Peterborough and Ipswich next week?

Nick Stevens

I think you have answered that question yourself there. They are both massive, massive games for Pompey.

If the Blues really want to be promoted this season, surely there is no other reason but to lift themselves.

For all of the heat Kenny Jackett has taken, these players need to shoulder some responsibility.

Things haven’t been good enough for too long when it comes to form. Players like Ronan Curtis and Marcus Harness have been touted as potential Championship performers, yet are scarcely meeting the standards of League One of late.

Charlie Daniels arrived with a lofty reputation and fans were raving about his arrival. However, he’s hardly made an impact and was again hooked off at half-time.

Players have heard stories from some of the League Two title winners how incredible it was to etch themselves into Fratton folklore. Surely they want to replicate that feat?

Pompey have little time to feel sorry for themselves ahead of two crunch games. Fail to win both and you can write off the Championship for another year.

Surely that's it, this can't go on, can it?

Richard Smith

Well, not if Pompey have any sort of hope of reaching the Championship.

The worrying thing is that it’s hard to see the Blues getting out of this current rut. As mentioned, the switch back to the tried-and-tested 4-2-3-1 system that’s pragmatic but has delivered results before might have to be the way.

For the individuals’ own ambitions this can’t go on. If Pompey aren’t going to be promoted then a lot of the current crop will potentially be eyeing moves elsewhere. On current form, they won't exactly be in demand.

How can a team not lift themselves for a Wembley final, irrespective of no fans being present? Shame on the players. Jackett gets a lot of blame, but what about the team themselves?

Carl Waters

We have heard a lot about team spirit and how wonderful it is this season. However, there have been few signs of togetherness when the chips are down.

For four games now, Pompey have failed to lift themselves from kick-off. Against Doncaster, Northampton, Sunderland and now Salford, they’ve been woeful in the first half and hardly shown any sort of response required.

No wonder why supporters are fully expecting another comprehensive defeat at high-flying Peterborough on Tuesday, then.

We’ve heard about these frank conversations and team meetings that were supposed to turn things around. They clearly haven’t worked.

What else can they do? Start displaying why they’re supposedly top-end League One players.

I can understand the club being reluctant to admit defeat with Jackett, but surely the Eisners, all the way from America, and Catlin realise for themselves the mood around the club is awful, the football is terrible and hope is disappearing. Why wait?

Trevor Carter

One thing you could say about the Eisners is, perhaps, they’re not around the city every day and don’t understand the general mood.

I know they get a lot of tweets, but it’s easy to block notifications and put down the phone to avoid it all after a loss.

However, seeing such a lacklustre performance at Wembley, coupled with morale clearly at an all-time low, will perhaps make them rethink their plans.

Mark Catlin is well aware of the mood around the city at the moment and he’ll struggle to settle tonight.

The reason Pompey are currently pursuing with Jackett is that they’re still in the play-off race and have a chance of a top-six finish.

If the Blues sink further away after dropping to seventh today then there might need to be a rethink.