Barnsley had not lost on home soil, while Pompey were unbeaten on the road.
So it should not have come as a big surprise to anyone that the sides played out a 1-1 draw in terrible conditions at Oakwell.
In freezing temperatures and driving rain, Gareth Evans drilled the visitors into the lead just before the break.
Cauley Woodrow levelled after it, but Kenny Jackett was not unhappy with the outcome, which ensures his side will be top of League One at Christmas.
The Blues boss said: “It was a high-quality contest and I was pleased with the point, even if we did take the lead.
“Barnsley had a free week and we didn’t, so I thought we played well when you take that into account.
"It was a high-quality contest and I was pleased with the point, even if we did take the lead."
“The conditions took over a bit during the second half, but our attitude and effort were both excellent.
“With the right combinations up front we could have got into some really good positions, so that’s something we’ve got to learn.
“We do feel that sometimes we need to get one or two players closer to Oli Hawkins to make us more of a threat on the break.
“To be fair to the ref, he had quite a few difficult decisions to make because of the conditions, which were tough, although I thought it was harsh to book Ronan Curtis for simulation.”
An injury for back-up keeper Luke McGee meant Alex Bass was recalled from his loan spell at Torquay to sit on the bench.
Jackett explained: “Luke has a broken bone in his hand – a very small one – and he’s going to be out for somewhere between two and six weeks.
“We just want to make sure that we can look after him and let that heal, so we’ve brought Alex back for the foreseeable future.”