Graham Alexander saluted Scunthorpe’s professionalism after their convincing 2-0 victory against Pompey at Glanford Park.
Former Blues targets Lee Novak and Duane Holmes bagged first-half goals for the Iron in a deserved victory for the hosts.
After the break, Kenny Jackett’s men faced a tough battle to claw back the two-goal deficit against a Scunthorpe rearguard who have conceded just three times in League One this season.
And the hosts stood firm yet again, with Pompey unable to unlock their defence.
Boss Alexander hailed his side’s performance.
He told the club’s website: ‘We’re delighted with three points first and foremost, that’s what we set out to do.
‘In the second half we showed a fantastic professionalism and discipline to make sure we didn’t concede anything silly, and we made sure we took the three points.
‘The two sides we showed in the two halves were both pleasing for me.
‘Portmsouth carried a lot of threats and are a good attacking team, which they showed last week (against Fleetwood).
‘They have pace, power, quality, experience and height, and we had to be really defensively strong as a team to keep the clean sheet and make sure we won the game.
‘I’m delighted with everyone that contributed to it – and that started from the front two.’
The scoreline could have been more than 2-0, with Novak hitting the bar and Holmes missing from close range just before the break.
Alexander was impressed with the prowess the Iron showed going forward.
‘In the first half, we played some really good stuff,’ he added.
‘It was really positive, incisive football culminating in the first goal, which I thought was superb play from everybody.
‘We were delighted to open our account that way.’