Tony Adams is urging Niko Kranjcar to rediscover his form as Portsmouth ponder a new contract for the Croatian to ward off interest from Arsenal and Tottenham.
Kranjcar, 24, rose to prominence for Portsmouth last season - scoring five goals and making a vital contribution from midfield to attract admiring glances from a number of rival Premier League managers.
Adams is hoping to tie the playmaker to an improved long-term deal at Fratton Park - but admits he expects more from Kranjcar as the FA Cup holders defend their trophy in their third-round replay at Bristol City tonight.
Kranjcar has netted just once this term after battling back from an ankle injury, sustained on international duty in August.
Adams said: "Niko can do better. He knocked in a few last season but has not scored since he was a 'super-sub' a couple of months ago.
"I expect more from my great players, and Niko is certainly one of them. I want to stretch my players, always push them - I think he is someone who needs that.
"He is a tremendous player, fantastic with the ball at his feet and great to watch - but he needs to keep delivering.''
Adams is itching to get back to match action at Ashton Gate, after Portsmouth's Premier League match at home to Manchester City was frozen off.
Portsmouth remain under scrutiny from the Premier League over the lack of under-soil heating at Fratton Park.
Adams was climbing the walls at home with nothing to do on Saturday afternoon, so is delighted another match has come around so quickly - despite Pompey's injury problems.
Midfielders Sean Davis, Richard Hughes and Papa Bouba Diop will all miss the trip to the west country as Pompey battle the possibility of becoming the first club since Chelsea in 1998 to win the FA Cup and then exit the competition in the third round the following season.
The Portsmouth manager added: "I wanted to play because I was bored around the house, and the wife was getting annoyed at me. I love football and being part of this fight we have got.
"We have actually gone a player down, despite not playing, because Sean Davis picked up a bug. But there is a lot of that going about at the moment.
"I am not going to panic because I have got some good players and I will get them into a shape to play Bristol City.''