Portsmouth manager Danny Cowley hailed his side’s fighting spirit after coming from behind to beat AFC Wimbledon 2-1 and extend their unbeaten run to seven games.
Marcus Harness scored the dramatic late winner at Fratton Park after Michael Jacobs had cancelled out Ollie Palmer’s penalty opener.
Cowley said: “It was a hard-fought win. I thought a lot went against us in the first half. We could have easily become the victim, we didn’t.
“We were playing well until the penalty decision. I thought we created a lot, but we need to be more ruthless when we create that many chances.
“It wasn’t perfect but we knew if we could find one we could probably find a second.
“Credit to Wimbledon because they’re an energetic fizzy side, they play with real intensity and they don’t give you a moment to get your head up.
“It was great for Michael Jacobs to get the equaliser. I am delighted for him and a fantastic finish from Marcus Harness to seal it.
“There’s a lot of things going against us at the minute off the pitch, we’ve been able to find a way and I think that’s really important for a team that’s still growing.”
Jacobs had a chance early on after a neat flick from Harness but was denied by a smart save from Nik Tzanev.
The Dons did have a decent effort of their own soon after when Palmer’s speculative effort was comfortably saved by Gavin Bazunu.
Palmer opened the scoring from the spot in the 24th minute after Ronan Curtis was penalised for a foul on Nesta Guinness-Walker in the 18-yard box.
However, Jacobs slotted home after 63 minutes to make it 1-1, and Pompey claimed all three points a minute from time when Joe Morrell found the in-form Harness, who netted his seventh league goal of the season with a fine finish.
AFC Wimbledon boss Mark Robinson said: “The performance was much better, the energy was much better, we just didn’t see our jobs through at a crucial time.
“We carried much more of a threat against a good side, which gives us something to build on.
“We are what we are but today we looked like a good side and we’ve got to build on that and the points will come.
“I don’t think anyone in the stadium can say we look like a relegation side because we’re not.
“We’re learning on the job and sometimes it can be a bit more frustrating for the senior players because they do see their jobs through and the youngsters don’t, but that’s learning.
“It’s frustrating, it hurts, but we can’t get knee-jerk about it.”