Joe Gallen expects Ronan Curtis response following Portsmouth axing

Joe Gallen has explained the reasoning behind Ronan Curtis’ Pompey axing.

Monday, 5th October 2020, 5:30 pm
Updated Monday, 5th October 2020, 5:47 pm
Ronan Curtis was dropped to bench duty at Burton on Saturday, although made a second-half appearance. Picture: Daniel Chesterton

And he has backed the Irish winger to come roaring back to form.

That meant a recall for Ryan Williams, with Michael Jacobs switched to a left flank which customarily houses Curtis.

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Curtis eventually came off the bench during the second half, marking his 100th outing for the club.

And Gallen is convinced the talented former Derry City man will find a way back into the side.

Pompey’s assistant manager told The News: ‘The manager felt he wanted a fresh formation and a fresh pairing up front.

‘It was a big call to drop Ronan, he has played very well for us, with two seasons of double figure goals and double figure assists.

‘He will be back. That lad will be back, wait and see.

‘Ronan’s a great bloke and it won’t do him any harm at all to be taken out of the side. Knowing him like I do, he will be itching to get back in as soon as he can.

‘Ronan hadn’t scored. He needs to assist and to score, that’s his role in the team on the left.

‘Obviously everyone has to work hard, but his role is to assist and score and, so far this season in the league games, it hadn't quite happened for him before Burton.

‘It won’t do him any harm to come out. A little bit of reflection on his part. We have both spoken to him individually, I get on very well with him and have told him what I think.

‘Knowing Ronan, he will listen and come roaring back – because he always does.

‘He will be disappointed, but takes it on the chin. He’s a man and I don't doubt for one minute that he’ll come roaring back for us.’

Curtis replaced Williams in the 62nd minute at the Pirelli Stadium.

He subsequently played a part in Pompey’s fourth goal, with Marcus Harness’ sublime finish also securing his hat-trick.

It was only the 10th time in 100 appearances that Curtis has been employed as a substitute.

Gallen added: ‘When we are trying to get more goals, dropping Ronan and John (Marquis) are big calls all round.

‘They’ll be back, they’ll be putting the two lads under pressure. In a few weeks time, it wouldn’t surprise me if we were talking about those lads again.

‘At the moment, Marcus did it on Saturday and we’ll keep going now.’

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