Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Interviews

INTERVIEW: Everything about the club appealed to me

2 August 2015

Joe Thompson on signing for United

New signing Joe Thompson spoke to us about signing for United ahead of the final training session of last week. 

"I'm absolutely delighted to have this done," he said. "When I found out I was going to be given the opportunity to come here I really wanted to sign and get it sorted as soon as possible.

"Everything about the club appealed to me. The lads have been really good with me, the manager knows what he wants and the training has been spot on. We've worked hard and I think I've settled in quite well already."

"Settling in is different for everyone because it depends what type of person you are," he added. "I feel like I'm the type who can adapt and integrate well into groups. 

"The day we had with Cassius Camps took us all out of our comfort zone but it meant you got to see lads in extreme conditions. The six month deal gives me an opportunity so I just want to go out there and do my best for the club. I'm sure if I do well something else will get sorted.  

"Trials can be like X Factor at times, it goes on forever and we slowly but surely get whittled down. It's happening more and more in football, contracts are harder to come by and clubs are making sure you earn that contract. You've got to show what you're capable of in however long that trial period lasts for.

"I had a few other offers but once I found out Carlisle were interested it was sorted within an evening. I jumped at the opportunity, it isn't too far from home and I knew a bit about the club. I've played here before and I know how good the surface is. I spoke to a few ex-players and they all told me how good a club it was.  

"I obviously know Jason Kennedy and I spoke to Luke Joyce when I got here. I also spoke to Evan Horwood and he only had good things to say about the club. It was one of those that felt right."

On what he can add to the squad, he said: "The manager wants me to be positive and he wants to give me a platform to get back to where he thinks I should be. 

"He's willing to give me the opportunity so it's my turn to show him he was right to have faith in me. I want to create and hopefully get some goals to help this team get up the league. 

"I like to think I can bring some creativity to the team. I want to create opportunities and I do want to chip in and get goals. Fundamentally I'm just going to work hard and do my best for the club." 

"I'm really excited about the season ahead," he told us. "I know it's a cliché but we need to take it one game at a time and make sure we get as many wins as quickly as we can. We can then push on from there. 

"This team is capable of more than people think. The gaffer has brought in a lot of good players with a lot of experience. We've got players who have played a lot of league games and if we get a good start you never know where it could take you. 

"There's a lot of competition for places and that's what breeds success. If we're pushing each other every day in training and during games it can only bode well. 

"I'm really eager and excited to get out there and show what I'm worth. You can see the competition in the 11v11s in training, everyone is pushing each other and if that continues into the season I'm sure success will be on its way."

And the opportunity to kick start his career at Brunton Park comes on just twelve months after he won a personal battle against cancer which has left him more determined than ever to get back to playing the professional game.

"The best form of my career was probably just before my cancer, or the incident as I call it, at Tranmere," he said. "I managed to get a couple of goals but I knew I wasn't feeling so well at the time. 

"I was playing well and I picked up a few back to back man of the match awards. It obviously all came to a head a bit quickly but I just want to get back to that level as soon as possible.

"It will be going on a year since I had that cancer so for me it's been put to bed. I was out for nine or ten months and I overcame it. 

"It wasn't easy but I did what I needed to do. I saw it as a bit of a life challenge and now I've got through it I do see things in a different way." 

"A lot of people ask what kept me going, and particularly when something like that gets thrown at you," he said. "I had my family around me and my little girl will have only been about one and a half at the time. She kept me busy and kept me going and, because of that, I just didn't want to go anywhere.

"It did come into my head a few times that my football carer could have been over. In the grand scheme of things I needed to get my health sorted before I really thought about that. This is why I know I need to cherish the opportunity I've got here. I just need to make the most of it."

"I do have to nip back to the hospital a few times," he explained. "I've got one more scan but that's just to make sure. Everyone is quietly confident that the cancer isn't going to come back and I know for a fact it isn't going to come back.

"I feel a lot better, and I'm not as tired as I was, but I feel I've not really touched my full potential yet. I want to go out there and express myself and do that as soon as possible. It's changed my outlook but it's a shame you have to go to such a dark place before you really start to appreciate things.

"I've learned a lot about myself over the last year or so. It showed me how mentally tough I can be because you do feel like a bit of a caged animal, with your back against the wall. You haven't really got any artillery or ammunition to fight back with. I'm a lot more determined and mentally stronger than I was.

"I don't take anything for granted and I'm blessed that it came to me at such a young age. You still get agitated but you know small things aren't the end of the world. If the baby spills something and it goes all over the couch, it really isn't the end of the world. 

"It's bout making the most of things now. That means showing everybody what I can do for Carlisle United."

United PlayerHD subscribers can see an interview with Joe Thompson now. Click HERE to go to the PlayerHD platform. Follow the same link for more information on United PlayerHD, and to subscribe.

Click HERE to see a clip from this interview on our YouTube channel. Follow the same link for more FREE content right from the heart of the club.

Advertisement block