It was a look that said it all for Pompey’s Danny Rose.
The Blues had just shattered any hope of a Colchester comeback – and the midfielder knew it.
He could see it staring back at him.
Kyle Bennett’s 46th-minute strike doubled Pompey’s advantage at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, following Eoin Doyle’s opener midway through the first half.
Up until that crucial moment, U’s boss John McGreal admitted he still thought his side could get something from the game – despite the visitors’ total domination.
But now there was no hope, and Rose knew the opposition were there for the taking.
The response was the Blues killing Colchester off with two further strikes, from the midfielder himself and captain Michael Doyle, as Paul Cook’s side ran out convincing 4-0 winners.
‘As soon as we got the second goal I think we knew that we’d run out winners,’ said Rose.
‘You could see it and sense it when you looked into their players’ eyes – they were very dejected.
‘Obviously, they’d have come out looking to get a foothold in the game at the start of the second half, but we’ve just completely killed it for them.
‘I don’t think David Forde had too many saves to make, and first and foremost we were solid all over the pitch.
‘We limited them to a low number of shots on goal and then we took our chances at important times.’
Rose admitted the solid foundations laid by the Blues straight from kick-off were vital as they recorded their biggest away win of the season.
Colchester enjoyed a spell of possession immediately after the game began, but were unable to make any inroads as the visitors kept it tight at the back.
That then provided the platform for Pompey’s attacking talents to stamp their authority on the game.
Rose said: ‘The first thing we made sure of is that we started from a solid base.
‘We didn’t give them anything in terms of a sniff up at our end and then we got the ball to our flair players who can go and win us the game.
‘I think we saw the likes of Kyle Bennett, Kal Naismith, Carl Baker and Eoin Doyle at their best, they can produce moments of magic and quality.
‘And fair play to Eoin Doyle, he’s had a tough time in terms of goals but he definitely got his rewards on Saturday.
‘He’s always in the right positions, he’s always making unbelievable movements and hopefully he can kick on from this victory.’
Rose, whose 61st-minute strike took his goal tally to four for the season, also praised the Pompey fans for their contribution as the Blues home in on possible promotion.
‘It’s the best feeling coming off the pitch with three points,’ he added.
‘It doesn’t matter if it’s a performance like you saw Saturday or if it’s a more dogged one, there’s just no better feeling than getting three points – especially in front of that incredible travelling support.
‘It was unbelievable to hear them outsing the home fans, which they do on pretty much every occasion we’re on the road, so credit to them again for turning out. It really does help us and helped us on Saturday.’