Striking days are over but Talbot's attacking instincts strong for Pompey

Drew Talbot has dropped further back on the pitch, while this month heralds his 30th birthday, but there has been one constant in his footballing career '“ those attacking instincts.

Wednesday, 6th July 2016, 10:00 am
New Pompey right-back Drew Talbot Picture: Colin Farmery

There was a time when he was employed as a striker, a rich promise which saw him recruited from Sheffield Wednesday by Luton for £250,000.

In the 2009-10 campaign at Chesterfield, he finished as the second-highest scorer with 10 goals from 35 appearances.

Yet it was with the Spireites where boss John Sheridan converted Talbot to a right-back.

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That unfamiliar position has now become a comfortable fit for the 29-year-old, who will start the coming season as Pompey’s right-sided full-back.

And while he has adapted and adjusted, Talbot’s willingness to make forward runs has never diminished.

He said: ‘I came through the ranks as a striker at Sheffield Wednesday.

‘Well, actually, I was a bit of a wide man, but because I was quick they used to push me up front to give the centre-halves a bit of a torrid time.

‘Then at Chesterfield we played away at Lincoln and the central defender was injured so the right-back moved across to cover – and I dropped in at right-back from the wing.

‘At the time I wasn’t best pleased about it. Still, I had to fill in until the central defender got back fit and then the right-back didn’t return to the team because I was playing so well!

‘Ever since I have stuck to it and I enjoy it.

‘I’ve had to work on my defending and got better and more wise at that but, basically, I remain a player who continues to like getting up and down.

‘I probably attack too much! I go when I can and just have to pick the right time when I do.

‘Today’s full-back is not necessarily a full-back, especially in certain formations when it involves a lot of out balls.

‘We saw at the Euros that England full-backs have more of the ball. You are not so much a defender any more, rather an outlet ball, you have to be good at football and fit and that is what pre-season is for.

‘You have to be that fit to be able to do both sides of the game – defend and counter-attack.

‘My plan is to go up and down the flank for Portsmouth and hopefully get a couple of goals.’

Paul Cook sides are characterised by attacking full-backs, as the Fratton faithful witnessed last term.

Only Kyle Bennett weighed in with more assists than Ben Davies and Enda Stevens as the Blues reached the League Two play-off semi-finals.

Of course, Talbot previously played under Cook at Chesterfield – and he is galloping across familiar ground.

He added: ‘I think with the players we have here I can help with attacks.

‘At Chesterfield I loved playing with Gary Roberts, I would put the ball down the channel into him.

‘I watched Portsmouth a couple of times last season and it reminded me of Chesterfield a little bit.

‘I’m versatile, if you can do the job in different positions and the gaffer needs you then why not. I am happy to play anywhere and will give it a go.’