They were once on the same side – now Danny Rose is aiming to dismantle Mansfield boss Adam Murray’s Fratton Park visit.
The pair served as Oxford United team-mates during the second half of the 2007-08 campaign.
We were dominating that much so, as captain, he changed the way the team were playing within the game, which was interesting to see
It was a crossing of paths which lasted six months, before teenager Rose moved elsewhere for regular first-team football.
However, the game has continued to throw them up as adversaries.
Now aged 35, Murray has hung up his boots and upon his Field Mill appointment was at the time the youngest manager in the top four divisions.
Approaching two years in charge, the ex-Derby midfielder has led the Stags to 13th in the current table.
And Rose is relishing facing his former colleague’s side tomorrow.
Pompey’s midfielder said: ‘I played with Adam at Oxford for a season.
‘He was a good player who had appeared in the Premier League and was really vocal.
‘At that stage I couldn’t really see him becoming a manager – more so when I faced him at Mansfield years later.
‘A few years ago it was noticeable he had those sort of qualities within him.
‘Being captain he had that tactical nous and was almost orchestrating, changing the tactics within the game.
‘We were dominating that much so, as captain, he changed the way the team were playing within the game, which was interesting to see.
‘You could see from that point he had the managerial potential within him.
‘His legs had gone a little bit so played the game to fit his body and the way he could get about the pitch. Whether he changed the tactics to suit him, I don’t know.
‘He’s done a good job at Mansfield. They weren’t in the greatest of positions when he took over and he kept them up.
‘They have consolidated since and just fallen short of the play-offs, but they have certainly been in and around it and threatened.’
With Amine Linganzi continuing to serve a three-match ban, Rose will operate in midfield.
Michael Doyle is also back, having seen out a one-match suspension.
Rose added: ‘Coming out of the Checkatrade Trophy allows us to 100-per-cent concentrate on the league, no distractions now.
‘We have worked hard this week on our tactics and how to go about tomorrow – and I think you will see that.’