Pompey received plenty of plaudits after a narrow FA Cup defeat at Premier League giants Tottenham on Saturday.
And the challenge is to maintain those high performance levels when they visit Bolton in the Papa Johns Trophy this evening (7.45pm kick-off).
A place in the semi-finals is at stake, with the prize of a trip to Wembley now lying tantalisingly withing reach.
Wanderers finished top of Northern Group B to reach the knockout stages before narrowly beating Barrow.
They then netted four unanswered goals in the second half to thrash Manchester United’s youngsters in the last 16.
Ian Evatt’s men currently sit fifth in the League One standings and drew 0-0 with table-topping Plymouth at the weekend.
This is the first of two games at the University of Bolton Stadium for Pompey this week, with the sides meeting again – with points at stake – on Saturday.
The most recent contest took place in the north-west last April, with Aiden O’Brien’s opener cancelled out by Kieran Sadlier’s penalty in a 1-1 draw.
In the event of a draw after 90 minutes, tonight’s tie will be settled by a penalty shoot-out.
Pompey remain without Tom Lowery (hamstring), Jay Mingi (knee), Joe Rafferty (stomach) and Jayden Reid (knee), while Clark Robertson (hip) is a doubt.
New signing Ryley Towler is cup tied and cannot feature, but Marlon Pack’s suspension does not cover games in the Papa Johns Trophy.
Jack Iredale (knee) is missing for Bolton, who will have defender Ricardo Santos available following a virus.
VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM
Read the thoughts of Simon Bassey ahead of the game.
HEAD TO HEAD
Pompey: 36 wins
Bolton: 42 wins
On the road
Pompey: 10 wins
Bolton: 32 wins
Referee: Robert Madden
Assistants: Joe Simpson and Graeme Fyvie
Fourth Official: Benjamin Speedie
Domestic iFollow subscribers can also enjoy audio commentary from Andrew Moon and Guy Whittingham as usual, but will need to purchase a match pass if they want to watch the game.
There will be post-match reaction on the website and our official YouTube channel, with highlights to follow on Wednesday.
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ALSO IN PAPA JOHNS TROPHY
Games kick-off at 7.45pm unless stated
Lincoln v Accrington (7pm)
Bristol Rovers v Plymouth
Cheltenham v Salford