Hearts boss John McGlynn declared Callum Paterson a full-time striker after his two goals in a 3-0 victory over Dundee United.
Paterson started the season at right-back, but he showed an eye for goal at Tannadice with a double as Hearts secured their first win since the opening day of the SPL season.
The 17-year-old showed impressive technique to fire Hearts ahead in the 28th minute when he met a half-cleared shot on the bounce and drilled home with his left foot from 20 yards.
The lone striker, who was moved up front for the defeat at St Mirren Park last weekend, then showed a goalscorer's instinct to follow up after Ryan McGowan had charged down United goalkeeper Radoslav Cierzniak following a slack passback from Sean Dillon in the 61st minute.
McGlynn said: "It's great for him. I felt he could have scored two goals last week and got himself into great positions.
"It was a great strike with his left foot and the second one, I have seen those missed when the angle is narrowed.
"I'm delighted for him. He caused problems for their defence all afternoon and was a handful to play against."
Paterson looks likely to keep John Sutton out of the team next week.
McGlynn said: "Callum came to us as an attacking player from Tynecastle Boys' Club two seasons ago. In that time he has played wide right in midfield and also went back and played at right-back and centre-back for the youth teams.
"In the close season I spoke to the backroom staff about what we had and obviously we are short of strikers.
"I wanted to get Ryan McGowan into midfield so I played Callum at right-back and he did well, but you could see he was maybe a wee bit suspect defensively.
"We pushed him further forward into midfield and he did very well. We have not got many strikers so we put him up front.
"He has caused problems and could have scored four goals.
"I would suggest there is good evidence to keep him up there."
Hearts quickly moved two ahead after Paterson's opener when Arvydas Novikovas struck a swerving shot past a wrong-footed Cierzniak from 25 yards.
United boss Peter Houston was disappointed with his side's reaction - they only threatened briefly either side of half-time - but felt his side were denied the chance to go ahead just before the opening goal.
Willo Flood claimed for a penalty when he ran into the box and fell as he went past Ryan Stevenson and Darren Barr.
Houston thought referee Alan Muir should have awarded a spot-kick and added: "It could have been a turning point. Teams get a lift, if we got a penalty kick and a goal then we could have got our tails up, but it was them who got the lift.
"They bullied us all over the pitch and I don't mean that in a bad sense.
"They were up and at us and pressed us very, very hard.
"You have to give them credit and I don't want to take anything away from Hearts, but we were a bit soft-centred."