Nathan Thompson has reminded Pompey's back line defending has to be their priority.
And that means thoughts of bombing on and providing attacking support may have to be put on the backburner to help the Blues find some resolve.
Three goals were shipped in last Saturday's 3-2 friendly reverse at Stevenage.
That suggests Kenny Jackett still has plenty of work to doto find the steel at the back he's demanding next term.
Pompey shipped 56 league goals last season, and the managerfeels that has to be brought down to less than one a game to make the campaign a success.
Jackett has recruited a sturdy left-back in Lee Brown and Thompson’s own instincts lie with defensive work.
The former Swindon man feels with help from the men in front of them the Bluescan shut up shop.
Thompson said: 'First and foremost we need to defend.
'That's always been my biggest strength and Browny is like that as well. He's an experienced head andknows where to position himself to get the better of the winger.
'Then we look to build on what we have.
'There is the likes of Jamal (Lowe) and Gareth (Evans) to do that out wide.
'But we have hard workers out wide who are always ready to put in a shift and cover you.
'We can also express ourselves going forward but we need to defend first.'
Thompson has been encouraged by the new faces who have arrived this summer to bolster Pompey’s squad.
The likes of Tom Naylor and Brown offer experiencewith Craig MacGillivray, Louis Dennis and Ronan Curtis stepping up competition.
Thompson sees no reason why the fresh blood can’t fit in to their new Fratton Park surroundings and hit the ground running when the season begins.
He added: 'The signings will be experienced enough to know where to slot in and their role.
'The gaffer will implement his ideas through the season, but overall you will know how to play your role.
'You've seen Browny come in and Nayls come in and be spot on.
'You've got the likes of Ronan as well who complements the left-hand side.
'There is a real plethora of options for the manager.
'We'll see through the course of pre-season if he changes things around and experiments.
'Come August 4 we have to be raring to go.'
- JORDAN CROSS