Mark Catlin explains why Portsmouth kept faith in Kenny Jackett through dark moments of season

Mark Catlin believes Pompey’s decision to show faith in Kenny Jackett has been justified.

Monday, 3rd February 2020, 5:00 pm
Updated Monday, 3rd February 2020, 7:47 pm
Kenny Jackett. Photo by Daniel Chesterton/

And the Blues chief executive paid tribute to his manager’s strength of character to come through the early-season firestorm he faced at Fratton Park.

That made it a club record-equalling eight wins on the spin as Pompey maintained their unbeaten start to 2020.

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And Catlin believes other managers would’ve crumbled under the same pressure.

He said: ‘Kenny is the first to say the start of the season didn’t go to plan.

‘But we stayed firm in our belief in Kenny as a club. He was given the time and has turned it around.

Kenny Jackett, left, with Michael Eisner and Mark Catlin. Picture: Joe Pepler

‘There’s still a lot of work to be done. We’re fighting on three fronts and we haven’t achieved anything yet. Kenny will be the first to admit that.

‘One of his biggest attributes is he will never get carried away when things are going well and conversely when they’re not going well it won’t send him under.

‘In modern football there’s a lot of managers who make rash decisions when the pressure starts to build. They think of the next game and not the long term.

‘I think a lot of managers could’ve folded given the start we had to the season. It’s not Kenny’s style.

‘It’s important we now focus on the future and not the past.

‘But Kenny, the team and behind the scenes we all stayed resolute.

‘We know how good Kenny is as a manager and so far it’s proved to be the correct decision to back him - which we continue to do.’

Catlin reckons Pompey’s faith in Jackett bucks a trend for hiring and firing prevalent in football.

He feels that’s partially as a result of external pressure, but the mood is certainly a positive one at Fratton Park right now.

Catlin wants to see that maintained for a campaign which is building towards a dramatic finale.

He added: ‘I do think in modern football you do see snap judgements.

‘A lot of that’s based on things like hysteria on social media.

‘While you have to listen to it you also have to act in the best interests of the club and take a broader view of things.

‘During those early games while the results weren’t particularly great, the performances were pretty good.

‘We had a great belief in the players, the manager and his backroom team and the chairman was resolute throughout Kenny is our man not just for the short and medium term but the long term.

‘So we urge supporters to get behind the team, manager and club to see where it takes in what looks to be an exciting final three months of the season.’