Pompey boss backs Bognor loan switch to boost defender's development

Matt Casey in action for Bognor / Picture: Tommy McMillanMatt Casey in action for Bognor / Picture: Tommy McMillan
Matt Casey in action for Bognor / Picture: Tommy McMillan
Matt Casey can put himself in the shop window for a loan higher up the non-league pyramid by impressing at Bognor.

That’s the verdict of Pompey boss Kenny Jackett as the fledgling centre-back aims to enhance his development at Nyewood Lane.

Casey’s hit the ground running since completing his temporary move to the Rocks at the beginning of the month.

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Ater making his debut in the 2-1 win at Leatherhead, he scored and was named man of the match in Jack Pearce’s side’s 4-3 win victory over Folkestone last weekend. He was involved again as Bognor won 1-0 at Potters Bar to edge closer to the Isthmian premier play-off places.

Pompey ideally would have sent Casey higher up the ladder than the Isthmian League premier division. The first-year professional had a brief spell at Hawks in the National League South earlier this campaign before undergoing an unsuccessful trial at National League promotion-chasers Yeovil.

But should Casey impress for Bognor, Jackett believes there will be scouts from higher divisions who might be potential suitors in the future.

The Blues manager said: ‘Matt’s had a loan spell at Havant, a trial at Yeovil but is now at Bognor. In terms of that experience, it definitely would have done him good.

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‘He doesn’t want to get stuck with no game time in the last few months of the season and the season running out on him. If you’re playing above your level, you will stand out and somebody will take you.

‘Every single club, one way or another, will have a look at the level just below them for their recruitment – every club does that.

‘It’s a pyramid system and people are always looking. If Matt is outstanding, and he's capable of that, then clubs higher up will be able to look at him as well. In terms of his progress and getting into Pompey’s first team, which he is doing it for, he can start low and maybe build up.’

Casey’s already earned plaudits at Bognor in their push for the play-offs.

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Jackett added: ‘He’s made a very good start and Jack is very pleased with him. They’re pleased to have him for their push for the play-offs because they’ve been floating on the edge. Hopefully Matt can help them.’