Sean Raggett has been challenged to kick-start his Pompey career.
The defender is vying for a spot in Kenny Jackett’s starting XI against Birmingham in the Carabao Cup after returning to training.
The summer arrival is on loan from Norwich for season, but has been hampered by an elbow injury towards the end of pre-season.
That restricted the 25-year-old to appearances in the warm-up games against UCD, Hawks and as an unused sub against Stevenage.
Raggett now has to try to play catch-up with the campaign under way and Chrtstian Burgess getting the nod to partner Paul Downing at Shrewsbury on Saturday.
Jackett also has to decide which way to go against Pep Clotet’s side tomorrow night in the televised first-round meeting.
And the Pompey boss feels the challenge for the player is put a stop-start period behind him and bring his no-nonsense attributes to the table.
Jackett said: ‘Raggett is ready, yes.
‘He’s only had one day’s training so far but he has to now just get on with it, to be honest with you.
‘He’s had two 90s in pre-season. He’s had some games.
‘It’s been a frustrating injury on his elbow, which is as the result of a tackle.
‘He’s okay anyway now and will be involved against Birmingham.’
‘He’s not had much in the way of football.
‘It’s one of them where training can help him.
‘But, similarly, as well he’s going to need to start playing as well.’
Raggett’s challenge is to displace the pairing of Burgess and Downing, who looked largely sturdy at New Meadow on Saturday.
Jackett has made it clear he sees the pair, Raggett and midfielder Tom Naylor as his options for two spots in the middle of defence.
Youngster Matt Casey is part of the senior squad but he looks likely to be sent out on loan in the coming weeks.
Jackett had praise for Paul Downing, who appears to be establishing himself after his arrival from Blackburn and Matt Clarke’s £4m departure for Brighton.
He added: ‘We have options with Christian and Paul Downing.
‘Paul’s impressed since he’s been here.
‘We’ve also got Tom Naylor who can play there, too.
‘So we’ve got enough experience in terms of the four lads we have competing there.’