The Portsmouth challenges being faced by match-winner - and how key Lincoln City moment can change things

Danny Cowley believes Ronan Curtis’ Lincoln match-winner can provide a timely boost to his confidence.

By Jordan Cross
Thursday, 14th April 2022, 3:00 pm
Updated Saturday, 16th April 2022, 12:01 pm

Curtis came off the bench to win the game for Pompey against Michael Appleton’s yesterday, grabbing the decisive finish in a dramatic five-goal second half.

The goal was the Republic of Ireland international’s first effort in eight games, after also going through an 11-game stint without hitting the back of the net this term.

That run has tested the 26-year-old’s self belief, with Curtis also in and out of Cowley’s side in recent weeks.

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So the Pompey boss was delighted to see the winger take centre stage with the kind of moment which will boost his belief.

Cowley said: ‘I was pleased for Ronan.

‘It is absolutely (good for his confidence), absolutely.

‘We know what Ronan gives us. He’s gives us that personality and character.’

Ronan Curtis

Curtis was dropped to the bench against Lincoln, with the one change from the impressive mid-week success over Rotherham seeing him make way for Aiden O’Brien.

Cowley felt his attack needed fresh energy, as well as the option of adding the impetus Curtis provides from the bench.

He added: ‘I thought he played well on Tuesday, but I just felt we needed fresh energy in that area of the team.

‘Tactically, we knew we’d suffer in the second half.

‘So I wanted players who could impact the game from the bench and have the character to get us over the line - Ronan brings that fight.

Football is a really honest game and when they work as hard as he did on Tuesday, it’s really nice when they then get their reward.

‘It may not be instantaneous but when they get those rewards it’s nice to see from a coach’s point of view.’