Brian Howard lived up to his pre-match billing the day he stunned Rafa Benitez, Jamie Carragher and the Kop.

Howard’s last-minute goal for Barnsley caused one of the biggest FA Cup shocks in recent years.

Now the requirement is more straightforward.

The former Sheffield United and Reading man is being asked to add precious experience and help Whitehawk away from the National League south relegation zone.

Howard, who turns 34 next week, came out of retirement to sign for Hawks boss Paul Reid.

He is targeting a points haul at home to Hemel Hempstead tomorrow and away to Hungerford on Monday after Hawks slipped into the drop zone.

But he is aware that, after 11 seasons as a Championship midfielder, he will always be best remembered for one moment of left-footed magic at Anfield.

Howard latched on to Sami Hyypia’s clearance, took the ball away from Xabi Alonso and fired a shot past Jamie Carragher’s challenge to secure Barnsley a 2-1 win over Liverpool.

He said: “I scored 15 goals from midfield that season and was Championship midfielder of the year but people always remember me for scoring against Liverpool.

“There was the whole thing with Matt Le Tissier going mad on Soccer Saturday. It sticks in people’s minds.

“I was the centre spread in The Sun that morning, talking about what it would be like to score the last minute winner at Anfield. Then I went out and did it. The whole thing fell into place.

The Argus:

“We got to the semi-finals and to captain my team at Wembley was a proud moment. We knocked Chelsea out in the sixth round but then lost to Cardiff from the Championship.

“Portsmouth won the cup that year and we reckoned we should have got some of their bonuses considering the teams we knocked out for them!

“I had 11 years in the Championship. I dropped down to League Two for family reasons at Oxford but I didn’t really enjoy League Two.

“I went to Eastleigh as my home town team and I thought it would be a nice scenario to help them into the Football League but we lost in the play-offs. But, with it only being three days a week at Eastleigh, I started doing things away from football and I enjoyed them.”

Howard, pictured, now works as a football agent and also trades in stocks and shares.

There was a bit of action with his local side Romsey but he had called time on his playing career until Reid, a former team-mate at Eastleigh, took over at Whitehawk and called him.

He said: “I jumped at the chance but I told him he would need to be a bit patient to get my fitness back to where it should be.

“Reidy said ‘You might not play every game or full games but I need some experience in the dressing room’.

“We have got a mixed bunch of lads. Some of the foreign lads have got talent but it is a matter of bringing it all together.

“Reidy will do that. He hasn’t been able to get his ideal XI together so far because of suspensions and injuries but we are getting people back now.

“He is working hard to add one or two quality lads to the team and to do things properly.

“He played for many years. He has certain standards of professionalism he will expect from the lads and rightly so.

“They are paid a good wage and they should live their lives like professionals.”

Howard believes Whitehawk can avoid the drop and is not looking beyond that.

He said: “We will sit down at the end of the season with Reidy.

“I might just be a short term fix for him, he might want to bring in younger lads.

“I’m open-minded. I might enjoy it or I might say it was a bad idea.

“But I will do my best for Reidy and the club for the short term and try to get us where we should be which is higher in the table.”