It was John Barnes who once rapped: ‘They’ll always hit you and hurt you, defend and attack.’
Well, Oli Hawkins has certainly taken those words on board since signing for Pompey on transfer deadline day back in August.
The towering striker has proved to be a success in his regular position and already provided seven goals.
And that tally is even more impressive when you consider he has been deployed as a makeshift defender in several games.
“I certainly wouldn’t class myself as a natural, but I’m happy to play at the back if I’m needed,” he says in the official matchday magazine for today’s clash with Shrewsbury.
“It helps when you’re alongside guys like Matt Clarke and Christian Burgess because they’re great defenders and talk you through it all. That communication from them, and also Nathan Thompson, makes it a lot easier.
"Striker to defender is something that’s easier to adapt to and you just pick it up as you go along."
“When you’re playing up front you pick up on the positions the centre-half will be in and it works the other way. If I’m in defence then I know the areas the opposition striker is going to try to get into.
“Asking me to play in midfield or on the wing is probably a bit too much, but striker to defender is something that’s easier to adapt to and you just pick it up as you go along.”
To read the full interview – where Hawkins also discusses the start to his Pompey career and playing in front of the Fratton faithful – pick up a copy of the magazine from programme sellers around the ground.
Also in issue 19, Connor Ronan reveals his favourite things, while Matty Kennedy takes the Home & Away quiz.
We take an in-depth look at Shrewsbury, plus there are exclusive columns from Mark Catlin, Kenny Jackett and Brett Pitman.
All this and much, much more in a packed 84 pages is available for just £3.