Matt Tubbs believes Pompey are ready for their season-defining month.
The new Blues striker is still waiting for his first win since his move to Fratton Park last month and felt that should have been achieved at high-flying Wycombe last weekend.
But after a run of five straight fixtures against sides in League Two’s top six, Pompey will now play only one team in the top 10 over the course of February.
Saturday’s home showdown with basement club Hartlepool is followed by a trip to Dagenham & Redbridge (February 10), a home clash with ninth-placed Exeter (February 14) and a trip to Cambridge (February 21).
The Blues will then finish the month with successive home games against Tranmere (February 24) and Oxford (February 28).
A productive run of results could see them climb the table quickly.
But if victories continue to prove elusive, Pompey could yet find themselves in serious relegation trouble.
Tubbs, however, believes it represents a real chance for the club to propel themselves up the standings.
‘February is a month where we are playing the teams in and around us,’ said Tubbs.
‘We certainly know they won’t be easy games because anyone can beat anyone else in this division.
‘But we are probably at a defining point in the season.
‘I think the league table is a bit false. With the players we’ve got in this team, we should not be down at that end of the table.
‘If we can keep putting in those types of performances, as we did at Wycombe, we will be shooting up the table sooner rather than later.
‘January was a tough month and we seem to have played all the teams near the top but, in the games I have played in, I think we have done really well.
‘Maybe we haven’t got the results we wanted but our general play and the way we moved the ball has been good.’
Tubbs, who spent the first half of the season on loan at AFC Wimbledon from Bournemouth, felt he was part of the best 45-minute display of any League Two side he has seen this season in the draw at Adams Park.
He said: ‘During my six months at Wimbledon, I didn’t see any team play like we did in those first 45 minutes.
‘If we can repeat that, then there’s no reason why we can’t beat Hartlepool this weekend and go from there.
‘It’s amazing what that little bit of confidence can do and you can easily reel off a few wins on the spin.
‘Other clubs have done it so there’s no reason why we can’t do the same thing.’
Pompey’s nine-match winless run has seen them drop to within two points of the relegation zone but Tubbs shrugged off those concerns.
He added: ‘We’re not looking over our shoulder at all.
‘We’ve shown we are a match for anyone. But we need to back that up with a few wins.’