Michael Appleton pinpointed his two Pompey debutants for praise after they helped earn a 2-2 draw at Colchester.
Having been given the green light to play earlier in the day, Liam Walker and Jordan Obita were instrumental in last night’s result at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.
Walker created Luke Rodgers’ opener, struck a post and was the Blues’ man of the match.
Meanwhile, Obita climbed off the bench to net with his very first touch.
It marked another encouraging night for Pompey fans, who saw their team once more play some flowing, attacking football at times.
Yet it is Walker and Obita who claimed the headlines.
Appleton said: ‘Liam has bags of quality.
‘He can play anywhere across the park and probably off the striker as well, he gives us lots of options.
‘He is someone who is comfortable in possession of the ball, has soft feet and a good range of passing. We saw his shot one or two times last night as well.
‘As for Jordan, he is someone we have been aware of for probably 12 months or so now.
‘Jordan is very similar to Jack (Compton) in terms of he’s a young player, likes to go past people, likes to get at people and is left-sided. Last night he was in the right place at the right time to score.
‘I think we started the game really well and got a little bit of reward with Luke Rodgers’ goal.
‘Then it took a lot of courage for the players, with so many young ones out there, to get the equaliser after conceding so late.’
Next up is a trip to Carlisle on Saturday.
Appleton added: ‘We are still waiting for our first win but I am sure we will win a lot of games this season playing a lot poorer than last night.
‘From a performance point of view, I cannot be any prouder because I thought we played some fantastic stuff and can only get better.’