Portsmouth boss Kenny Jackett urges Rangers loanee Ross McCrorie to tone down aggression to avoid further red cards

Ross McCrorie has been urged to refine his game – or suffer more red cards.

By Neil Allen
Friday, 6th September 2019, 7:00 am
Ross McCrorie has swiftly impressed at Pompey since arriving on a season-long loan from Rangers. Picture: Nigel Keene/ProSportsImages/PinP

That’s the message from Kenny Jackett, who is concerned the Rangers man’s combative style can land him further suspensions.

McCrorie was handed a final warning by referee Chris Sarginson during Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Blackpool.

Booked early in the first half following a foul on Sullay Kaikai, the Scottish midfielder eventually had to be substituted on 76 minutes as he tottered precariously close to dismissal.

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Jackett has been impressed by the impact of McCrorie following his arrival on a season-long loan.

However, the Scotland under-21 international has already earned one ban following a debut-day dismissal at Shrewsbury.

But Pompey's boss concedes the youngster needs, on occasions, to rein in his natural aggression.

He said: ‘I do think it’s something we have to look at, Ross was sent off in his first game – and then on Saturday was one foul from it.

‘In terms of his booking against Blackpool, a few people have told me they thought it was harsh, being his first foul.

‘Then again, he didn’t need the body contact because he can catch people – and he was only just past the halfway line.

'We can’t just blame referees all the time, we have to try to take responsibility ourselves.

‘And if it’s around the box and the guy is going to shoot, then yes, but just over the halfway line, with Ross’ athleticism, he can catch people, so sometimes should be a little more patient and use his pace.

‘Ross is quick, I saw him drive out on Saturday, I saw him drive out against QPR and create a goal, I’ve seen him drive in pre-season games, he has good pace with the ball.

‘But sometimes, in terms of the tackle, he can be a little more patient, don’t make any body contact or go across people, give yourself another 5-10 yards, particularly if you haven’t got it and it’s not around the box.

‘Then you will get back goal side and recover, that’s something he has to learn.’

McCrorie has made five appearances since linking-up with Fratton Park from the Rangers.

And the 21-year-old has made an instant impact with everyone connected with Pompey.

Jackett added: 'I have been very impressed with Ross, I think he’s a very good player and will have a good season.

‘On Saturday we had McCrorie, Ben Close and Andy Cannon, that’s a young midfield three and I think quite a good midfield three.’