Wes Fogden loathes being a spectator on the wing – now he’s thriving from becoming Pompey’s action man.
The 25-year-old has proven to be a revelation in the 4-2-3-1 system caretaker boss Andy Awford has introduced so successfully during his two matches in charge.
Operating centrally as an attacking three behind lone striker Ryan Taylor, the ex-Hawks player has brought an infectious energy and desire to the role.
It’s a key positional change from serving wide on the right-hand side of midfield so frequently under previous Blues boss Richie Barker.
Now Fogden finds himself in central areas, allowing his non-stop running to be more effective for Pompey.
The Blues are hopeful he can recover from the knee injury which forced him off after 86 minutes of last weekend’s Hartlepool victory, to line-up against Dagenham & Redbridge tomorrow.
And, if able, Fogden is relishing picking up his central-midfield remit.
‘I am an action player and like to get involved in everything and help out where I can. The central position is one I am thriving in at the moment,’ said Fogden.
‘It gives you more freedom than if you were played as part of a central-midfield two, where you have to be a bit more disciplined.
‘I was also restricted when asked to stay out wide and provide width under the previous manager.
‘At Chesterfield (under Barker), I was given a licence to roam, which is great for me. There is more action and I am more involved in things, which is how I like to play.
‘I don’t like to stand there and watch too much – even making a run to create space for my team-mates can be beneficial.
‘Being out wide means I have to find myself in a position to cross the ball rather than what I can do in terms of playing short passes, moving around players and trying to make things happen.
‘When I first signed for Bournemouth, I made my full debut in that central position. For two months I stayed there and thought I did alright.
‘I feel making those runs helps get more bodies in the box and makes space for other people as well.
‘Although, if a manager asks me to do a job anywhere on the pitch then I will do it to the best of my ability.’
Fogden has made 13 starts and two substitute appearances since arriving from Bournemouth in mid-January.
Before then he hadn’t played a first-team fixture since April 2013.
But the midfielder feels he is now back to optimum fitness and effectiveness.
‘Straight off after coming down here, I was building my fitness up for the first month or so,’ added Fogden.
‘I hadn’t played for so long before then and even after that it has been tough being in-and-out of the team.
‘But I think my performances have been okay and I’m really enjoying it.’