Nathan Thompson is convinced ‘unplayable' Ronan Curtis can inspire Pompey to promotion.
The Irishman has made an instant impact since becoming Pompey’s first signing of the summer, with five goals in seven games.
The calibre of the 22-year-old’s early-season displays have also warranted his shortlisting as Sky Bet player of the month for League One.
Curtis is unavailable for Saturday’s visit of Shrewsbury following a Republic of Ireland under-21 call-up.
It’s a blow – yet Thompson knows they’ll be plenty more devastating Pompey outings to come from the former Derry City forward.
He said: ‘He is extremely confident. You see what you get with Ronan. He is strong, he is quick, he is powerful.
‘He’s scoring goals for us, important goals as well, and when you are are flying with confidence like that you are unplayablel.
‘There is no reason why this team with that sort of player cannot go and get promotion this season.
‘We saw from day one Ronan has a confident persona and carries that on to the pitch.
‘Although, I am really surprised with how quickly he has settled – in terms of finishing in front of goal and playing in front of 18,000 fans every week.
‘It takes a little bit of getting used to, there’s a lot of pressure but he’s taken to it like a duck to water and been fantastic for us.
‘Ronan’s had words with opponents, that’ always the case when someone you face is playing well against you.
‘If he’s scoring goals and nutmegging lads at the end of the game, opponents are going to talk him into reacting and doing something.
‘Tony McMahon at Oxford was constantly trying to get into his head because Ronan was getting the better of him.
‘With us leading 4-1, it was difficult for McMahon to get close to him, so Ronan will have to learn lads will try to wind him up – and he just has to come out on top.’
Andre Green and David Wheeler are in the frame to replace the unavailable Curtis against Shrewsbury on Saturday.
The League One strugglers will be relieved to hear of the Irishman’s absence, especially after demolishing Plymouth with a man-of-the-match showing.
Thompson added: ‘He is on fire at the moment and long may that continue.
‘It’s tough for defenders, you saw that Plymouth tried to get tight and end up being bounced off.
‘He’s too strong – and then he leaves them for dead while carrying on with his run.’