Deadline Day signing Sam Jones believes Grimsby Town is the perfect fit for him.
The 25-year-old central midfielder has told Mariners Player that he was eager to get the move to Blundell Park.
“Good following – great fans, so for me as soon as I heard about Grimsby Town, I was definitely on the edge of my seat thinking ‘I’d love to play for them’.
“Unbelievable fan base. That’s obviously a massive up for the club and a massive thing for me to come here.”
He continued: “The size of the club, the manager, good players here, so I just feel it’s a good opportunity and a privilege to play for a club like Grimsby Town.”
The attacking midfielder, who was Gateshead’s top scorer this season with 11 goals in all competitions, admitted he’s always admired Town boss Marcus Bignot.
He said: “The manager here, I remember playing against his former team last season when I was at Alfreton – played against them and I remember thinking ‘I wouldn’t mind playing for that gaffer one day’.”
And Jones, who hasn’t previously played in the Football League, admitted the transfer has helped him achieve a personal goal.
“I knew straight away that I wanted to come to this club. Just everything about the club, it’s a big Football League club, and it’s been my aim for the last two years to get back into League football.”
But the Barnsley-born midfielder, who will be moving back to Doncaster where he was brought up, admitted he thought the deal had fallen through.
“Gradually as January kept on going I realised ‘Okay, this could happen,’ until a couple of days ago when I thought it wasn’t going to happen and then obviously it happened and I was happy about that.
“I thought it wasn’t going to happen but I’m glad it has. I’m here now so looking forward to it.”
There will be a familiar face here at Town for the midfielder as he played alongside Mariners centre-back Dan Jones when the defender joined Gateshead on loan earlier this season.
The midfielder said: “He’s a funny old lad. He’s a good lad and I’m looking forward to seeing him.”
Jones was at Leeds United from the age of 15 until 18, including a two-year scholarship, but after missing out on a pro contract at the Whites, he left football out for a while and travelled around the east coast of Australia.
But he missed the game too much and came back to England to play at a “low level” for a bit of extra money. After spells with two clubs at that level, he moved to Alfreton at the beginning of the 2015-16 campaign, where scored 13 goals in 36 appearances.
He signed for Gateshead last summer and scored nine league goals in 18 starts for the Heed, before penning a two-and-a-half year deal for the Mariners on Deadline Day.
Jones could make his Mariners debut this Saturday (3pm) as Bignot’s side welcome fifth-placed Luton Town to Blundell Park.