It had been a while since Marlon Pack last graced the Fratton Park turf.
A 2-0 Championship defeat to Cardiff in August 2010 represented his last appearance in a Pompey shirt before departing for Cheltenham.
Fast forward 12 years and the midfielder has returned to the Blues, playing the full 90 minutes of a pre-season defeat to Coventry.
It was an enjoyable return for Portsmouth-born Pack, who cannot wait until the ground is packed when the competitive action starts.
He said: “I hadn’t been back in the opposition team, so it was really good to be out there and I enjoyed myself.
“You’re not going to get the same size of crowd in pre-season, but the Pompey fans were – as usual – really vocal.
“They got behind us and I’m looking forward to them cheering us on throughout the season. They can make a big difference.
"You’re not going to get the same size of crowd in pre-season, but the Pompey fans were – as usual – really vocal."
“I think that’s especially the case at Fratton Park and I don’t think they necessarily realise the influence they have.”
Viktor Gyökeres and Joe Panzo were on target to seal victory for the visitors, but Pompey had some decent chances of their own.
Pack said: “It was a really good test for us against high quality opposition – I’ve played against them a few times in the Championship.
“They’re one of the best in possession and the way they link up in the final third, but I thought we held up pretty well on the whole.
“We were unlucky at times and their keeper made some fantastic saves, but it was probably just that little bit of quality for them that told in the end.
“There were certainly some promising signs from us as we lead up to what will be a really tasty first league game.
“We’re getting there and we look really fit, which will help us throughout the season, while I know the gaffer’s looking to bring a few more in.
“You want to be ready for the first match, but as much as everyone looks to that one, the work we’ve been doing is to be ready for the whole campaign.”