Reeco Hackett made just one appearance for Pompey in his first season-and-a-half at the club.
An EFL Trophy game at Walsall soon after signing in January 2020 was all he had to show for his efforts.
But the forward has been afforded more substantial time on the pitch during the opening stages of the 2021/22 campaign.
He has featured 11 times already and also found the target in 2-1 away defeats at Millwall and Burton.
Now Hackett is hoping he continue to make an impact, as the Blues search for a return to winning ways when they host Sunderland on Saturday.
He said: “It’s been tough at times, but everything happens for a reason and I’ve just continued to work hard.
“I kept my head down and waited for the opportunity. I’ve never given up and am now able to see the rewards from that.
"It’s been tough at times, but everything happens for a reason and I’ve just continued to work hard."
“Danny and Nicky have come in and handed me a chance, which gives you a lot of confidence. You want to show that faith in you is right.
“The team have been punished for our mistakes in recent games, but we need to stay together and fight our way through it.
“We’ve got to be better – you don’t need to be told what the aim is when you come to a massive club like this.
“It’s a big game on Saturday, but it’s also just the next one. We have to go out there and try to put things right.”
Hackett emerged from the bench at Burton on Tuesday night and reduced Pompey’s two-goal deficit with a fine free-kick.
He said: “I was raring to come on and it was a really good opportunity for me to make a positive impact.
“I don’t think I’d been on the pitch when we had a free-kick in an area I like. I saw a chance and so I took it.”