Verdict: Portsmouth reaping the rewards of captain Brett Pitman’s new role
Pompey are reaping the rewards of Brett Pitman’s positional switch.
That is the verdict of News sports writer Will Rooney in the latest edition of Pompey Talk.
Experienced front man Pitman has featured from the start as a number 10 in each of the Blues’ past four matches.
The 30-year-old’s positional switch came around after an inspired showing as a substitute in the defeat at Charlton last month.
Prior to that, Pitman had fallen out of favour at Fratton Park and failed to be included in the match-day squad for four successive matches following the FA Cup fourth-round replay defeat at QPR.
However, an inspired showing for Pompey reserves against Swindon put the striker back in Kenny Jackett’s thinking.
Now the former Bournemouth front man seems to have ousted Gareth Evans as the preferred option in the number 10 role.
Rooney admitted it looked a long way back for exiled Pitman when he was axed from the team.
But he believes the former Ipswich man has once again proven he has something to offer since his positional switch.
Speaking in the latest edition of Pompey talk, Rooney said: ‘Fair play to Brett Pitman.
‘It looked a long way back for him when he was dropped out of the squad for that Doncaster game.
‘There were about three or four games he missed out on the match-day 18.
‘But he’s always had the belief and always known his quality to get back into the side.
‘To be fair, he is playing in the role he prefers.
‘Maybe it’s been a bit of a blessing in disguise for him.
‘If he was on the bench as a striker maybe he wouldn’t have that much of a look in.
‘Instead of Kenny Jackett playing him at Swindon in a reserve game in that number 10 and giving him that option now.
‘It’s reaping the rewards for Pompey.
‘Brett playing in that number 10 role gives them a bit more of a goal threat.
‘Obviously he hasn’t got the same energy as Gareth Evans, especially at the start of games.
‘But he’s always a threat and the opposition are aware of what can happen if they let him go.
‘If you give him half a yard in the box, he’s probably going to put the ball away.’