It was certainly not Pompey’s most fluent performance of the season.
But Kenny Jackett welcomed the character on display in a dramatic 3-3 draw with in-form Rochdale at Spotland.
His side fought from behind on three occasions, as the prolific Brett Pitman cancelled out strikes from Brad Inman and Stephen Humphrys.
Ian Henderson looked to have won it for the relegation-threatened hosts, only for Matt Done to nod into his own net in stoppage-time.
And Jackett was pleased with the outcome, although knows that Pompey will have to improve to cope with future challenges.
The Blues boss said: “I felt that Rochdale were almost a yard sharper than us right the way through the game.
“They had beaten Shrewsbury and Bury going into this one, so obviously had their tails up. It was never going to be easy.
"We were never on top, but gave it everything we’ve got and we’ll certainly need to be better against Plymouth."
“We did well to hang on to their coattails and come back three times because our opponents had a good attacking flow with plenty of movement.
“But there were some spaces for us to get into and when that happens, it’s always going to give you a chance.
“We kept going and changed both personnel and formation during the match to ultimately pick up a point.
“You always need character and belief to go alongside quality, while a couple of players coming back from injury helped our options.
“We were never on top, but gave it everything we’ve got and we’ll certainly need to be better against Plymouth next Saturday.”
Pitman’s brace means he has netted seven times in the past five games to spearhead Pompey’s play-off quest.
Jackett said: “He’s trying hard to claim the last one, although it certainly looked like an own-goal from their left-back to me.
“But Brett was putting them under pressure and both of his earlier finishes were good, while he was unlucky with another chance in the first half.”