Michael Appleton applauded the Pompey faithful following their remarkable Stamford Bridge performance.
Around 3,000 Blues fans packed into the old Shed part of the ground during yesterday’s FA Cup clash.
Appleton’s troops endured a harsh 4-0 defeat to Chelsea, a scoreline which failed to reflect a gutsy and impressive display.
Yet off the pitch the Pompey support put their home counterparts to shame throughout.
Their noisy and unwavering backing was a memorable feature of the third-round encounter.
It was certainly noted by Appleton from his position in the technical area on the touchline.
And he was quick to pay tribute to their magnificent showing which was an outstanding constant from start to finish.
He said: ‘The fans were amazing, absolutely amazing.
‘You saw them having a party towards the end when we were 4-0 down! It just shows how great they are.
‘That was a fantastic effort from them, we really appreciated that. Hopefully they were pleased with how we performed for them on the day, I certainly was really proud with the way the team played.
‘I want us to show the same commitment, desire and quality that we had against Chelsea when we come up against West Ham next weekend.
‘I know the fans will still be there giving such great backing.
‘For me the West Ham game is just as important, if not more important than yesterday’s game.’
Meanwhile, Appleton, right, is refusing to get carried away with talks about a Pompey takeover.
Andrew Andronikou last week sparked fresh hope of a new owner’s arrival in the immediate future.
That has yet to happen, although clearly talks are on-going with interested parties.
However, for supporters, management, players and staff alike the wait for a resolution goes on.
Appleton added: ‘Andrew Andronikou came out a few days ago and said we would have a new owner in the next 48-72 hours.
‘But I did sit down with the players and say “please take that with a pinch of salt” because I think you have got to be more cautious than anything on this one.
‘From our point of view, we are told there are two or three really interested parties and they are pushing each other very hard.
‘From my point of view we are in the first week of January now going into the second week – I think it is important, if we can, to get a little bit of stability in the football club – i.e. new owners.
‘I see it as a perfect opportunity to come in January and really stamp their authority and show what their ambitions are for the club.’