Hawkins revelling being back among Pompey goals

Oli Hawkins toasted that scoring feeling after a successful return to his familiar striking role.

Monday, 1st January 2018, 5:58 am
Oli Hawkins celebrates scoring in Saturday's 3-1 win against Northampton Picture: Joe Pepler

The 25-year-old struck twice to fire Pompey to a 3-1 triumph against Northampton on Saturday.

It was the first time in the Blues’ past 10 matches that he had started in attack, following injury and a stint in defence.

Nonetheless, Hawkins headed home Christian Burgess’ long pass on the stroke of half-time to give Pompey a 2-1 lead.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He then doubled his tally by heading in Dion Donohue’s left-wing cross at the far post on 48 minutes.

It represented the end of two-and-a-half months without a goal – then again rarely had he featured in attack.

Hawkins said: ‘I had a chance on six minutes, but it happened so early and that was my first touch of the game.

‘If it had happened five or 10 minutes later, once I’ve had a few touches and a bit of confidence from something, then I might have slotted it in.

‘But it didn’t faze me, I scored two goals and may have got a hat-trick.

‘For the first, the pace of the ball from Burge was brilliant.

‘We were doing a few good diagonals and it was working, me heading it down to the runners. Luckily, this had great pace on it, but no-one was around me.

‘So all I could really do was direct it towards goal – and it went in.

‘I purposely made sure I got a good connection to arrow it towards the back stick.

‘I wouldn’t say it was my furthest goal to score a header, I’ve scored a header a little bit further out from there before.’

Hawkins’ second goal represented his sixth for the club following a deadline-day move from Dagenham & Redbridge.

He added: ‘I was mainly focusing on trying to wait at the back stick, but the cross dipped into the middle of the goal. But I gambled a little bit quicker than the centre-half and got on the end of it.’