Kenny Jackett: No time for Portsmouth’s League One force Jamal Lowe to down tools after hitting goal target ?????????????????????????????????????????????????
Kenny Jackett saluted Jamal Lowe for hitting his goal target but declared: Don’t stop there.
The Pompey winger netted his 15th of the season in the 3-2 victory at Wycombe last weekend.
That ensured the former non-league ace reached the objective he set at the start of the season with six games remaining.
Lowe has proved a key attacking threat during the Blues’ League One promotion push and is on track to clinch the club’s Golden Boot prize.
He’s also registered nine assists in all competitions.
But with Pompey chasing a top-two spot, Jackett insists the 24-year-old must maintain his high standards during the final stretch – starting today against Rochdale.
The boss said: ‘It is a really good total and hopefully he is not finished yet.
‘The way we play in a 4-3-3 system, the wingers really have to get goals.
‘We work hard on our wingers getting in between the posts on a very regular basis.
‘Jamal does that. He gets across the centre-forward, makes runs and, as well as getting wide and crossing, he can cut in and shoot.
‘We do feel it’s something we work on and give him licence to do so.
‘It’s important we recruit players that can do that as well.
‘There are always spells when the opposition keep you out a bit more and it’s not as easy to do that.
‘But Jamal has looked a goal threat for the majority of the season and 15 is a good total.
‘With the importance of what’s going forward, I hope he is not finished now and hope there are some big goals ahead.
‘He has done well in his second season and he is a force in the division.
‘I certainly hope he is ready for the next level but you don’t know that until you play.
‘But for Portsmouth, this year he has improved, got stronger and more confident.’
What makes Lowe’s tally more impressive is he doesn’t have penalty or free-kick responsibilities.
The former Barnet talent did step up to score in the shootout when Pompey triumphed in the Checkatrade Trophy final against Sunderland last month.
And Jackett revealed Lowe wants to take spot-kick duties on a regular basis.
He added: ‘It is a great tally – and he wants to take the penalties!
‘He’s behind Brett Pitman and Gareth Evans but Jamal wants to take the penalties.
‘So does Lee Brown and Oli Hawkins and when they were needed, it was a good five.
‘When we ask about penalties, they are consistently the ones that speak up.’