It has been the busiest transfer window that Danny Cowley has ever known.
Since being appointed head coach on a permanent basis at the end of last season, he has moved to reshape the squad for the 2021/22 campaign.
It is a period that has seen 14 new players through the door at Fratton Park, with Mahlon Romeo the final arrival on deadline day.
And Cowley is delighted with the business that Pompey have managed to complete over the past three months.
The Blues boss said: “We now have a really good balance to our group and competition in every position, which is what drives the standards.
“I’m looking forward to getting everyone together again now that the window has finally shut – it’s felt like the longest one in history!
“This is, without doubt, the busiest that I’ve ever been involved in, although I knew early on that it was going to be tough.
“With it being post-pandemic and not really knowing how the window was going to unfold, we’ve all had to work hard.
“Credit must go to those people behind the scenes for the amount of due diligence that’s been undertaken – those who get on with things tirelessly and never really get the credit they deserve.
"We now have a really good balance to our group and competition in every position, which is what drives the standards."
“They know who they are and a massive ‘thank you’ has to go out because it’s not possible without them.
“Now it’s great to know where we’re at and what we have, so the exciting part is maximising the quality we have in the squad.
“We’re fully aware that there’s a lot of hard work in front of us and we want to accelerate that with what we do on the training pitch.
“It’s been a busy window, but ultimately a successful one – but the moment it shuts, you start looking ahead to January because football stops for nobody.”
Ellis Harrison was linked with a deadline day departure, but the striker opted to remain on the south coast.
Cowley said: “Credit to Ellis because he was in on his day off on Wednesday and working with Nicky on his finishing.
“He had some offers to move elsewhere, but wanted to stay at the club and that’s totally his prerogative.
“I’m happy with that because we all know that a fit and firing Ellis can have a positive impact on our team.
“My challenge to him is to go beyond that and help ensure we are a side that’s challenging for promotion.”