Nathan Thompson believes Pompey can still achieve promotion from League One this season – but only if they find consistency.
Kenny Jackett’s side suffered their fourth league defeat of the campaign with a 2-0 loss at Scunthorpe on Saturday.
The Blues have failed to pick up back-to-back victories so far this term and results have fluctuated.
After a 4-1 romp against Fleetwood seven days earlier, Pompey could not build on their momentum and were comfortably beaten at Glanford Park.
Summer-signing Thompson is a veteran of the third tier and knows what it takes to be near the summit of the table.
He reached the play-off final with Swindon in 2015 but the Robins lost 3-0 to Preston at Wembley.
The versatile defender insisted the Blues can still finish in the top six if they string together a persistent run of good results.
He feels Shrewsbury and Peterborough – who currently sit in the top two – know how to pick up points on a weekly basis, despite being short of star names.
Thompson said: ‘I felt there was excellent potential in this team to get promoted and we saw that last weekend.
‘Fleetwood have brought down a good side to Fratton Park and we’ve put them to the sword.
‘Once we find that consistency and we start to do that more often, I feel like we’ll be in and around it.
‘The teams you see near the top aren’t filled with star names.
‘The likes of Shrewsbury and Peterborough know what they have to do to get results week after week.
‘If we’re going to find ourselves up near the top of the table that’s what we’re going to have to start doing.’
The trip to Scunthorpe was always going to be a tough challenge for Jackett’s outfit.
The Iron finished third in League One last season and harbour automatic promotion ambitions this term.
Graham Alexander’s men are a well-oiled machine and his players know their duties both individually and as a team.
Thompson believes Pompey should use Scunthorpe as a blueprint if they are to finish in the play-offs.
‘They (the players) are all well drilled and know their responsibilities,’ he added.
‘Maybe that naivety from us snuck in because to come away with a 0-0 wouldn’t have been a bad result.
‘They have guys who know the league inside out.
‘They know what it takes to be in and around the play-offs and automatic promotion. ‘
‘That’s what we have to do. We have to find that consistency and pick up points when we’re not playing as well as we can do.’
– WILL ROONEY