Sonny Bradley believes the Fratton faithful will be the players’ inspiration in League Two this season.
The 21-year-old defender got his first taste of playing in front of the Blues’ passionate home fans in the pre-season friendly against Charlton.
It was a game Guy Whittingham’s new-look side eventually lost 3-0.
But the support afforded to Pompey was not lost on former Hull player Bradley.
He believes that positive energy can be soaked up by the team and inspire them to great things as they attempt to claw their way out of the Football League’s bottom tier.
‘I’ve played in front of a few big crowds but nowhere near as passionate as it is here,’ said Bradley.
‘I think there was over 8,000 at the game on Saturday but it felt like there were 20,000, it was that loud.
‘I can only imagine what it’s going to be like for the opener against Oxford. We went 1-0 down and, instead of getting on our backs, the Fratton end got up and lifted our confidence.
‘The fans project a certain confidence into the team.
‘We hear them singing and it’s like we don’t want to let them down, let’s play for them.’
With season-ticket sales surpassing the 10,000 mark for the new campaign, Bradley admitted he is now eagerly anticipating the first home game of the season against Oxford on August 3.
‘People keep telling me season-ticket sales are going up and up,’ he said.
‘I spoke to Jed Wallace and Dan Butler and they told me what it’s like at Fratton, saying you’ve never seen anything like it.
‘That makes me kind of nervous but excited, too. So going into the first game, let’s just hope we can fill the place, get it bouncing and get a good result.’
– MARK McMAHON