PAUL Linwood has set his sights on an automatic promotion place after completing his first week as a Chester City player.
The former Tranmere Rovers defender told The Chronicle of his joy at signing for the Blues and of his high hopes for the forthcoming season.
'I'm made up at the moment. It's been a long time coming and I'm just happy to be here,' said the 22-year-old, who has signed a two-year deal with the Blues.
'I can't wait for the season to get started because I think we've got a great chance of automatic promotion.
'There are at least 21 pros at the club and on paper I think we have the quality of a League One side. So it's just a case of going out and proving it by producing good performances and winning football matches.'
The versatile defender, who enjoyed a successful loan spell at Wrexham last season, has no qualms about dropping down a division into League Two and points to the influence of Mark Wright as a decisive factor in his decision.
He said: 'I spoke to Mark Wright a few times and when I went to see him I got a great vibe from him.
'He's similar to me in that he is a winner. I always give 100% and I need to win all the time because I hate losing.
'Mark was also a very good international defender who played in a World Cup and with me being a young centre back I think that I can learn a lot from him.'
Linwood reckons the chance to join City and play in his favoured position at centre back was an opportunity he could not turn down and he is determined to become a fixture in the side after being in and out of the Rovers team during his time at Prenton Park.
He said: 'I'm coming to Chester as a centre half and that is where I intend to play. I filled in at Rovers at right back and left back on a few occasions but that is not really my position. 'Now I'm here I'm looking forward to being an important part of the team.' Despite the difficulties surrounding his transfer, with a fee between the two clubs set to be decided by tribunal, Linwood bears no animosity towards his former club and insists it was time for him to move on.
He said: 'I've got no problems with Tranmere at all. I left on good terms and I've left a lot of friends behind.
'I enjoyed every minute of my time there but it was time for a new challenge and I'm now looking forward to doing my all for Chester City.'