Ronan Curtis got the only goal of the game as Pompey grabbed a 1-0 win in a sleepy pre-season win at Stevenage.
Jamal Lowe got the assist in the 64th minute for the far-post header, as he started amid speculation over his future and Wigan’s interest.
New boy Marcus Harness was given a 25-minute run out after his arrival from Burton Albion on Thursday.
Ross McCrorie was head and shoulders the standout player as he started with Ben Close in midfield and showed the quality he clearly possesses.
It proved a slow opening 45 minutes, low on quality and with little in the way of clear chances.
Emmanuel Sonupe was allowed to get away down the right after 11 minutes but his angled drive was wild and wide.
Lee Brown’s 16th-minute free-kick was deflected wide for a corner, while the left-back’s delivery 17 minutes later couldn’t be tapped in by Ronan Curtis at the back post.
Ellis Harrison headed wide at the back post from Curtis’ free-kick in the best chance of the half for the visitors just before the break.
The sedate pace continued, however, with very little happening until 19 minutes after the restart when Lee Brown played a short free-kick to Lowe in the box, and he lofted a ball to the back post for Curtis to head home.
A moment of quality followed in the 73rd minute when Anton Walkes chipped an effort at goal from 20 yards which beat keeper Paul Farman, but came back off the bar.
But that was the last of it with the first team having just next weekend’s warm-up against Crawley and a behind-closed-doors friendly with Brighton to come before the season begins.