Kenny Jackett saluted his much-changed Pompey team following Checkatrade Trophy progression.
The Blues won 1-0 at Crawley tonight to secure their passage into the second round, with one group game to spare.
Dion Donohue grabbed the decisive goal on 37 minutes - in his first match of the season following an injury and illness ravaged period on the sidelines.
There was also a debut for 16-year-old defender Haji Mnoga, becoming the second-youngest in Pompey’s post-war history in the process.
And with nine changes in total to the side which lost to Gillingham last weekend, Jackett was delighted with how the Blues fared.
He said: ‘We’re pleased to get through, wins against Gillingham and Crawley take us through qualification with one game still to go.
‘It was also getting back to winning ways quickly after Saturday’s defeat.
‘As a group, although it was a much-changed team for us, it was good to experiment, to look at several people who haven’t had many minutes yet because the team has been quite settled - and then a promising youngster in Haji (Mnoga) as well.
‘It was also good for us to be able to change things around slightly in the second half by going three a the back and hopefully the league games can benefit from that.
‘There weren’t many chances at all, a quality goal from Donohue stood out - and in the end has made the difference.’