Pompey bowed out of the EFL Cup with a 3-2 extra-time defeat at Coventry City tonight.
Paul Cook’s team, which included 11 changes from the side that drew with Carlisle in their League Two opener on Saturday and five debuts, impressed for large spells at the Ricoh Arena.
However, all their good work was undone in the second period of extra-time, when Andy Rose capitalised on a loose ball in the box to give the Sky Blues victory.
Young keeper Alex Bass, making his first start for the Blues, parried Ryan Haynes’ shot from the edge of the box straight into the path of Rose, who had the simplest of tasks of knocking the ball home from five yards out to score the decisive goal.
Normal time finished honours even at 2-2.
Curtis Main opened the scoring for the visitors on 18 minutes when he confidently found the top corner from the penalty spot, after Kyle Bennett was brought down in the box by Marcus Tudgay.
Pompey were the better side in the first half, with Main and Bennett linking well and Adam May and Gareth Evans firing over.
But the hosts came out with a real intent in the second half and equalised on 59 minutes when Haynes volleyed home.
They took the lead on 81 minutes when Vladimir Gadzhev finished off some good work from Ruben Lameiras.
But the Blues refused to throw in the towel and responded with a terrific strike from Kal Naismith from a free-kick on 84 minutes that gave home keeper Reice Charles-Cook no chance.
Pompey could easily have gone on and won the game in the few remaining minutes of normal time, with substitutes Noel Hunt and Conor Chaplin threatening.
Bennett could also have been the match-winner in extra-time when he should have scored when one-on-one with Charles-Cook.
However, it wasn’t to be for Cook’s much-changed outfit.
In the 106th minute, Rose struck at the far post to end their EFL Cup hopes for another season.