Kenny Jackett reveals what's needed for Portsmouth to gain promotion this term

Kenny Jackett welcomed Pompey’s growing status as League One contenders as he outlined what’s needed to deliver promotion.

Tuesday, 24th December 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 24th December 2019, 6:10 am

The Blues will aim to throw themselves firmly into the heart of the race to reach the Championship when they welcome leaders Wycombe to Fratton Park on Boxing Day.

Pompey are also just five points from the automatic promotion spots with a game in hand on both of the sides who currently occupy those positions.

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The impetus is growing as we arrive at the half-way point in the season and Jackett now has to find the right approach which will continue the upward curve.

He said: ‘It’s there for us if we can get our second half of the season right. That’s a good thing.

‘It’s open, it’s an open division for a lot of teams.

‘For myself and my staff it’s about picking the right team and getting the right selection.

Kenny Jackett Photo by Daniel Chesterton/PinPep

‘It’s getting the right combination of players and getting people back fit.

‘Then also at the right time in January it’s adding the right player.

‘They are the big calls for us in trying to get the consistent wins to get us up the table.

‘Clean consistent team selection and formation. I do believe in those things.

‘I think we have a chance and it’s what we do going forward now.’

The story of this season is a long distance from 12 months ago when Pompey found themselves six points clear at the top of League One with a game in hand on second-placed Luton.

A poor start to the campaign has put them in a position where they need to emerge from the chasing pack in 2020 to deliver success.

Jackett is unsure if that will suit his team but feels, however the narrative unfolds from here, they will have to handle pressure.

He added: ‘We were in a better position last year. Where is it psychologically. Have we got more to lose or gain?

‘They are important things and they do affect players. They certainly affect the crowd.

‘We all operate under pressure. That’s why we’re here.

‘The psychology of it. What do we have to lose? Are you chasing and more positive? I’m not sure really on that.

‘I do know there’s a certain amount of pressure to be successful. There has to be, you’re in professional football. One way or the other you have to handle that.

‘As a manager there’s two things you look for - the next game and the next window. They are the biggest things you can affect.

‘I’m not sure where the pressure comes from or how it compares to last season, but if our side is good enough over the second half of the season we’ll do it.

‘We have to make sure our team is good enough. I have to pick the right players, make sure they’re prepared, fill the holes where needed and sign better players where I can and if needed.

‘If we’re a good enough we’ll do it. I’ve always believed that.’