Portsmouth boss’ message to Swansea loanee after angry exit against Sunderland following latest omission

Kenny Jackett insisted he can understand George Byers’ frustration after his early exit following his Sunderland omission.

Thursday, 11th March 2021, 12:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 11th March 2021, 12:17 pm

The Pompey boss confirmed the midfielder chose not to watch the defeat at Fratton Park on Tuesday night, after being left out of the squad for the 2-0 defeat.

The Swansea loanee didn’t make the 18 men named following the 4-1 embarrassment at Northampton.

It’s the latest disappointment for Byers, who has started just two games and had four outings off the bench since stepping down from the Championship in January.

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Many supporters have been left surprise at that lacking of playing time, with high hopes for the 24-year-old who has stated his belief he can make a big impact Pompey’s promotion bid.

Jackett admitted he can see the reasons for Byers’ emotions boiling over.

He said: ‘He was there and has left the ground.

‘It is (frustration). Whether a player stays and watches the game, they don’t necessarily have to.

Pompey loanee George Byers

‘They have to report, but obviously there’s disappointment in there as well. I understand that.

‘He has to look forward and he’ll be competing for that midfield space.

‘He wants the chance, he wants the opportunity. He thinks he can do it, too, but there’s some frustration at not playing.

‘Like every player, he wants the chance, he wants to play and he wants to do well for Portsmouth, definitely.

‘They are all good intentions and then there’s some frustration in there with not getting an opportunity.’

Although his starts have arrived in defeat, Byers has offered plenty of insight into what he can bring to the table in those games along with his sub appearances.

Others have certainly been more culpable than the former Watford man, but Jackett hinted part of his decision was he felt Tom Naylor and Andy Cannon were suited better as a pair in a two-man central midfield.

He added: ‘Maybe (he felt Naylor and Cannon work better as a pair). For him, like every player, you play your best when there’s a complement around you.

‘I’ve backed Andy and Tom, that’s been the case, and I think they’ve been good players for us.

‘But he’s a very confident player and confident in himself, certainly in terms of wanting to go into the heart of midfield and be able to affect the game.’

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