He spent years helping to protect Aberdeen FC’s goal mouth.
But now Dons legend Brian Irvine is helping to protect the public after joining the police at the age of 51.
The former defender, who also played for Ross County, will be now be patrolling the city streets after making his name patrolling the Pittodrie turf.
And, despite being the oldest recruit in his training class, the 1990 Scottish Cup final penalty hero said the decision to join the force was one that was in his blood.
He said: “My dad was in the police for 30 years and I actually tried to join after I left school.
“When I didn’t get in, I went to the bank where I worked for four years, I was playing part-time for Falkirk when Alex Ferguson signed me.
“I have had all of these different experiences until now where I’m at the point I wanted to be in the first place.”
Mr Irvine made his Dons debut in 1985 and went on to make more than 300 appearances for the Dandies over 12 years.
He was also capped nine times for Scotland during his career.
In 1990 he would seal his place in Dons folklore when he scored the winning penalty in the Scottish Cup final against Celtic.
And he said the prospect of running into fans who remembered him from the past while wearing his uniform is “surreal”.
“I think the fans from my generation might recognise me, but some of the younger ones not,” he added.
“I’ll be working some matchdays at Pittodrie – I’ve helped on the pitch and now I’ll be able to help out around it.”
After finishing his playing career with the Staggies in 2004, he spent a brief spell as Elgin City manager before taking on a number of coaching jobs, which took him as far afield as South Korea and America.
But the pull of the police remained strong, and he admitted it was an “emotional” day when he was officially welcomed into the force at the traditional passing-out parade at the Scottish Police College in Tulliallan.
He added: “My mum and brother were at the parade, it was quite an emotional day.
“I often remember my dad speaking about his time at Tulliallan, I got goosebumps during the ceremony.
“My mum’s very happy and excited about it, she told me my dad would be proud.”