Kenny Jackett reveals Glasgow Rangers' verdict on Ross McCrorie's recent lack of Portsmouth minutes
Kenny Jackett insists Glasgow Rangers have raised no concerns over Ross McCrorie’s lack of Pompey game time.
The Blues boss is in frequent contact with the Scottish giants, who understand why the 21-year-old loanee hasn’t featured since returning from injury at the end of last month..
Having undergone rehab at Ibrox for a recurring hamstring complaint, McCrorie has been an unused substitute in Pompey’s past four games.
James Bolton has been first-choice right-back after the Scotland under-21 captain sustained his setback in the 1-0 victory over Ipswich on December 21.
Meanwhile, Jackett’s side have moved into the League One play-off places during that period.
McCrorie arrived on a season-long loan at Fratton Park hoping to be a first-team regular but has been restricted to 15 appearances to date.
Yet Rangers aren’t taking exception to McCrorie's current situation.
Pompey boss Jackett said: ‘Ross has been okay, trained hard and trained well.
‘There are no after-effects after his hamstring injury, which he has had two of this season.
‘As ever, he is pushing for his place and my advice to all those players (on the fringes) is to be ready.
‘I’ve been pleased with the back four. They’ve been solid in terms of defending and have offered good service. There’s been a good balance.
‘James has been a part of that at right-back. We have six Tuesday games on the trot and you’ll always need a squad to fall back on should there be injuries, suspensions or a loss of form.
‘I speak to Rangers’ loan manager (Billy Kirkwood) on a regular basis and he understands the situation.
‘There’s a good relationship between the clubs because of that and they've seen the games he’s played.
‘He’s had two hamstring injuries and been sent off, so those things have affected it.
‘Since he's been back with us after undergoing rehab with Rangers, we won every game up until Coventry, so it’s hard for him.’
Arriving primarily as a centre-midfielder, the Dailly-born ace is now in Jackett’s defensive plans.
And McCrorie's competitive nature is why he’s held in high regard.
Jackett added: ‘He played at Exeter for the reserves and it was his first 90 minutes for quite a while because of the hamstring injury.
‘He got booked after 30 seconds! I like his competitive attitude, which is good, but obviously it can’t result in bookings and sendings off.
‘It’s a good start but then you have to adapt and find your way. I do like his competitive edge.
‘His last game in midfield was Accrington and that was probably our worst performance of the season, but I wouldn’t put that down to Ross.
‘Off the back of an injury in a first-team game at Fratton Park, I think he is stronger at right-back.
‘But that’s young players and we have to keep going. I do think there is a player there and I do like him.’