Pompey will see the best from Michael Appleton only when the transfer shackles are released – according to the man himself.
The 36-year-old has made a fine start as Blues boss since taking the reins in November.
But, off the pitch, Appleton has been unable to strengthen his squad amid the club’s ongoing financial uncertainty and transfer restrictions placed on them by the Football League.
And Appleton admits it is severely hampering his plans.
He said: ‘Sometimes I feel I can’t do my job to the best of my ability.
‘When I can do my job to the best of my potential and can bring top-quality players to this club, that’s when you will see the real Michael Appleton.
‘I don’t want to make excuses. The facts are what they are.’
Appleton is keen to bring West Brom’s Joe Mattock back to the club on loan and has been given permission to complete that deal.
But he has had to wait as an injury crisis at The Hawthorns delays the move.
Mattock is just one of a number of players the Pompey boss would like to add to the ranks, though.
Appleton said: ‘I’d love to strengthen the squad by five or six players. At the minute, I’m not able to do that so I get on with it.
‘If I get too down about it or take my eye off the ball, the players will start feeling sorry for themselves.
‘But what would help and put everything to bed would be a new owner – that wouldn’t go amiss!’
Meanwhile, contrary to reports, the Football League confirmed there was no meeting on Pompey’s current predicament this week, although their regular monthly board meeting is scheduled for next Friday.