Jackett defends Pompey recruitment

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KENNY JACKETT vowed to continue with his policy of recruiting young, hungry players.

But the Pompey boss acknowledged his squad is need of an injection of experience for next season.

Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler

Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett this week completed his third summer signing with Craig MacGillivray signing on a two-year deal after leaving Shrewsbury.

MacGillivray follows non-league attacker Louis Dennis and Irish prospect Ronan Curtis into Fratton Park, with the Blues manager getting his summer business moving.

Defender Lee Brown is expected to follow after leaving Bristol Rovers, while Anton Walkes has been lined up to arrive from Spurs after impressing on loan last season.

Pompey have yet to add a player with significant experience at League One or a higher level.

Supporters are hopeful a heavy-hitting midfielder could be that man, similar to the way Brett Pitman strengthened the front line last season and went on to bag 25 goals.

Jackett can see the need for some extra nous among his options, but also values calling on youthful vigour.

And the 56-year-old sees no harm in adding that from a lower level.

Jackett said: ‘It’s one of those where people are maybe looking for names at times.

‘Sometimes, though, those names don’t do it and they can take the club backwards.

‘At other times you can get a player out of nowhere and he’s different class.

‘It all depends what they do on the pitch. There’s no right or wrong.

‘I do see that if you are looking at a balance of our squad it’s players from above, players who have been there and done it, are the ones we’re lacking if you like.

‘But you can’t have everything.

‘Sometimes you can have a whole side full of those and you need some pace, power and energy.

‘It’s about a balance, but I think here it is leaning slightly to the younger, hungrier players.’

Along with midfield strengthening, some additional attacking pace looks to be on Jackett’s agenda along with the players he’s lined up and already brought in.

Jackett explained there’s plenty of progress being made on that front with nine weeks still to go until the window closes.

He added: ‘We know where we are in terms of recruitment and we know what we need.

‘We have to keep pushing away because this is the recruitment season.

‘We have to be as strong as we possibly can.

‘At this stage it’s about putting as strong and as balanced squad together as possible.

‘There’s irons in the fire, definitely. We’re having several meetings with people to convince them this is the right place for them to come.

‘We also have to sense a degree of hunger from them that they want to come.’