The key ingredient Ronan Curtis believes ranks Portsmouth's current squad ahead of past two seasons

Pompey are now a point off the League One automatic promotion spots after their 2-0 victory at Ipswich.

Sunday, 13th December 2020, 6:00 am
Ronan Curtis, second from left, celebrates at Ipswich. Picture: Simon Davies

Momentum is growing, as is belief – but Ronan Curtis insists the Blues must remain grounded.

The winger was part of Kenny Jackett's side that was hurtling towards the Championship two seasons ago.

Top of the table at Christmas, fans hardly need reminding what transpired in the second half of the campaign when they suffered play-off semi-final defeat to Sunderland.

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But Curtis reckons there is more togetherness and camaraderie in the current dressing room – which is proving pivotal.

And while the Republic of Ireland international is not yet getting carried away, he believes Pompey have the ingredients to deliver promotion.

He said: ‘We've got to keep our feet on the floor and if we do from now until the end of the season then we'll be up there.

‘Every day is a learning curve. When we're watching games back and watching the opposition, everyone knows what's expected from each other and it's different this year.

‘I think we can do it. It's about keeping confidence and striding through the season.

‘There's more togetherness in this group and we have each other's back through thick and thin. You see it in training, we have little nibbles at each other and do it on a Saturday.

‘The players that come and go are great players. There are big expectations at Pompey with the fans and it's the same at Ipswich. It's the same at Sunderland and Lincoln - there are high expectations.

‘We've just got the keep our feet on the ground, stay confident and kick on.’

Pompey look well over their indifferent start to the campaign.

They took another scalp of a promotion rival against Ipswich, with Ryan Williams’ first-half double firing the Blues to success at Portman Road.

Having also defeated Sunderland, Peterborough and Lincoln, Jackett’s men are convincing they can challenge for a top-two finish.

A frank conversation between the players after the abject 2-1 loss to Wigan proved an important turning point.

Now Pompey prepare for meetings against Fleetwood and Hull – who are also fancied to go up.

And Curtis is adamant the Blues are ready for both tests.

He added: ‘Players go on a downward spiral at times and it’s only us players on the pitch that can change it.

‘We sat down, looked at what we could do to make things better and it’s shown.

‘Everyone got things off their chest, we got the truth and the right things out and it’s been a learning curve.

‘Everyone wants to win games, be promoted and get winners’ medals at the end of the season.

‘We’re in the right frame of mind but have to keep our feet on the floor, keep playing well and keep the confidence at a minimum. We can’t get too cocky or arrogant.

‘On Saturday, it could have been 3-0 or 4-0. We know Ipswich are a passing side but they never threatened and that’s down to us.

‘We’ve won two on the bounce before playing Fleetwood and then Hull. Three games in seven days is going to be tough but we’ve got to be ready for that, which we will be.’