Kenny Jackett is certain Pompey can still deliver promotion despite an unprecedented stuttered start to the season.
The Blues will have played three fewer League One games than some of their rivals following today’s round of fixtures.
Pompey were forced to postpone their clash with Rotherham last month because of Victorious Festival, while last weekend's game against Southend was called off after Ronan Curtis, Craig MacGillivray and Ross McCrorie were selected for international duty by their respective countries.
Jackett’s troops were due to meet Bury today but instead face Norwich under-21s in the Leasing.com Trophy, after the Shakers were expelled from the Football League.
The Blues boss admits he’s never experienced a situation like it during his managerial career.
And with international breaks scheduled for next month and November, it could mean Pompey have an even bigger backlog of fixtures to fulfil later in the campaign.
But despite only collecting five points from as many games to date, Jackett’s confident there’s still plenty of time for his troops to make up ground in their pursuit of the Championship.
He said: ‘I haven’t seen many seasons like this but it is what it is. There’s nothing you can do about it and it’s out of our control.
‘We just have to be ready when the games come – that is it.
‘As a team, as a group and as a club we have to give it our best when the games come around.
‘But I have never seen a start like this when a game is called off for a festival, Bury pulled out of the league and in League One when you have three internationals.
‘I didn’t want to call the Southend game off, but when Marcus Harness went off injured I was four players down from the side that drew at Blackpool, which wasn’t a bad result.
‘There would’ve been too many changes and it would have been too much of a risk.
‘We didn’t want it to be off but all we have to do now is concentrate on the games when they do come.
‘You’d always want to start well, but can we do it from where we are? Yes we can, definitely.’