It will likely be a much-changed Pompey side that takes to the pitch at Peterborough on Tuesday evening.
But Joe Gallen insists that plenty of senior players will be involved in the Papa John’s Trophy third round tie.
The Blues are, of course, the competition holders after beating Sunderland in the 2019 final and are still waiting to play last season’s postponed Wembley showpiece against Salford.
And this latest test provides an opportunity for certain members of the squad to get some much needed time back out on the pitch.
Assistant manager Gallen said: “We’ve got a good squad of players and the majority of them are fit and able to play at Peterborough.
“The team will be led by a lot of senior guys who need a game of football and haven’t had one for a number of weeks.
“From that point of view, it’s a really good time for us to have this match to help their overall fitness levels.
"The team will be led by a lot of senior guys who need a game of football and haven’t had one for a number of weeks."
“There will be a familiar feel about the side, although those who started at Bristol City probably won’t be doing the same on Tuesday.
“We will be aided by some of our younger players and we’ll be aiming to put out a strong team. We’re looking forward to the test.”
Pompey beat their next opponents 2-0 in a league contest at Fratton Park last month, but the clubs are separated by just two points in the table.
Gallen said: “Peterborough are a really strong side who have a fairly recent history of getting out of our league and into the Championship.
“They’re up there challenging for promotion again this season and have a talented squad and experienced manager.
“I feel their forward line is especially strong and they’re League One rivals, so we’ll have to play very well if we want to get the win.”
Pompey will once again be without keeper Alex Bass, who misses out with a relatively minor calf problem.
Gallen explained: “He won’t be available for this game after having a clash with Haji Mnoga in training last week.
“As you would expect with Haji being built like a brick wall, Bassy came off worse! We’re hopeful he’ll be okay for the weekend.”