Gareth Evans believes Pompey are better equipped to mount a promotion challenge this season.
The Blues had a busy summer in the transfer market, with several players arriving on permanent and loan deals.
It seems to have had a positive effect, with just two points being dropped from the opening six league fixtures.
And Evans feels that the squad is stronger than the one that finished eighth in the third tier last term.
“I think it definitely is,” he declares in the official matchday magazine for Saturday’s clash with Shrewsbury. “I’m not saying we were weak last season, but the club did most of their business pretty early in the summer and have brought in what was required.
“It has strengthened us – not only in the starting 11, but also with the players we’ve got on the bench.
"It has strengthened us – not only in the starting 11, but also with the players we’ve got on the bench."
“You saw that last Saturday when three players had to go off, but we had real quality to come on. That wasn’t always the case last time.
“There have been times when we’ve been under the cosh – Bristol Rovers springs to mind – and perhaps last season we would have conceded or not gone on to win the game. Now we’re looking a lot stronger defensively.
“The gaffer said at the start to make sure there were just zeros or ones in the goals against column and that’s what we’ve done so far.
“If that happens then the attacking players in our squad ensures we’ve always got a chance of getting the victory.”
To read the full interview, where Evans also discusses being one of the longest-serving members of the Blues squad, pick up a copy of the matchday magazine from programme sellers around the ground.
Also in issue six, Nathan Thompson reveals his firsts and lasts, while Danny Rose has his general knowledge put to the test.
Fans can read exclusive columns from Mark Catlin, Kenny Jackett and Brett Pitman, while we continue to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Pompey’s first top-flight title success with a detailed look at the 1948/49 campaign.
There is also an in-depth look at Shrewsbury, an interview with former Blues and Shrews winger Martin Reagan and much, much more in a packed 84 pages.
And remember not to miss an issue this season, with the spine of the magazine revealing a fantastic picture as the campaign progresses.
You can pick up your copy for just £3 from programme sellers around the ground.