Kenny Jackett on why Ryan Williams is missed when not in Portsmouth side - and shouldn't be underrated

Outside of Pompey’s dressing room, Ryan Williams’ input can tend to be underrated.

Sunday, 13th December 2020, 1:00 pm
Updated Sunday, 13th December 2020, 2:12 pm
Portsmouth midfielder Ryan Williams (7) during the EFL Sky Bet League 1 match between Ipswich Town and Portsmouth at Portman Road, Ipswich, England on 12 December 2020.

Yet Kenny Jackett is adamant the Blues noticeably miss the tireless Australian whenever deprived of his first-team presence.

They represented his first goals since February’s 3-0 victory over Rochdale.

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Regardless of his long wait to return to the scoresheet, the 27-year-old has proven a key member of the side, either down the right or through the middle.

And it’s an ongoing contribution which is fully appreciated by his manager.

Jackett told The News: ‘He’s not underrated by us. I think Ryan’s a good player and it was great for him to get a couple of goals.

‘I’m pleased with him, but I am most weeks. Generally for us he plays down the right-hand side, puts a real shift in and brings a lot to the team.

‘Sometimes we miss him when he’s not playing, although we have other players who can do very well. I think we have some good forwards at the moment and he is one of them.

‘It’s slightly different when you are inside the club and working with people, you get to know them a bit better, and Ryan’s a popular player.

‘In terms of our players and supporters, he is very well appreciated.

‘He has a good all-round game down the right-hand side and brings a lot of energy.’

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Williams has now scored five times in 57 appearances during his second Pompey spell.

His goalscoring record has been criticised, yet the Australian international’s energy, work-rate and willingness to perform as a team player is outstanding.

And this season his versatility offers a different attacking dimension to a team which has established itself as League One’s highest scorers.

Jackett added: ‘At times Ryan is more central. On other occasions, you need Marcus (Harness).

‘Between them it’s a good combination and the right player for the right game.

‘Sometimes we rotate them in the game, it very much depends on the stage of the match, the opposition, and just how successful we are going forward.’

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