Guy Whittingham reflected on finally grabbing his first league win on the road this season and smiled: We did it ugly.
Pompey had let leads slip in each of their three previous matches on their travels to finish with merely a point on each occasion, but there was no such mistake at Burton.
Despite Yassin Moutaouakil’s sending off in the 84th minute with the visitors two goals clear, they managed to cling on to triumph 2-1.
Maiden Blues goals from Ricky Holmes and Simon Ferry proved to be decisive in an effective display.
The final whistle prompted a wry grin from Whittingham as he made his way from the field of play after ending a run of three 2-2 away draws in a row.
And he admitted Pompey were not at their best to achieve it.
He said: ‘I had a wry smile because we just couldn’t keep that clean sheet away from home and had made it hard for ourselves in the end by going down to 10-men.
‘When they pulled one back Barry Harris was keeping me up to date.
‘He said there was 12 seconds left.
‘I did question where they got five minutes from but I won’t go into that.
‘It’s the result that counts as we all know and we got the win.
‘We won ugly for us, I thought. We didn’t attack as we have done this season.
‘We have said before about away performances and the importance of a two-goal cushion, Saturday we got it and was what we needed.
‘I was pleased with us defensively. I am not on about defensively as a back four, I am on about the way we defended as a team. I thought we did well.
‘Not many teams win at Burton. They have a fantastic home record and make it difficult to play against.
‘They push you back, they drop it in, they get people joining in and we are obviously delighted with the result at a club that will be up there or thereabouts.
‘I told them at half-time, basically they were 1-0 up, you don’t have to score another goal, you don’t have to force play this half, make sure when you do get it you are keeping the ball and you create those opportunities.
‘We had to keep the ball moving and doing the professional things as a team winning at half-time and we managed to get that win.’
There was controversy in the build-up for Pompey’s second goal when Holmes appeared to trip Damien McCrory.
The winger went on to shoot, with Jordan Pickford parrying and Ferry following up to poke home.
Referee Dean Whitestone was on the receiving end of the Brewers’ anger and Whittingham admitted he could sympathise.
He added: ‘You see those get given all the time.
‘There was one given a couple of minutes earlier so I can understand their bench getting upset.
‘But we will take it because there will be other days it happens to us.
‘And it has happened in the past, we have had decisions go against us.
‘Gary Rowett knows they will get a decision down the line that will equal that one.
‘But it’s not nice having that one against you, of course it isn’t.
‘It happens all the time. A few years ago Ricardo Rocha did it at Reading and was sent off.
‘Sometimes you get them, sometimes you don’t.’