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INTERVIEW: I just need to give the manager something to think about

Defender James Brown on signing for United and his debut at Morecambe

1 September 2017

Defender James Brown made the move up to Cumbria last week and got his first taste of football for United in the Checkatrade Trophy game at Morecambe on Tuesday. We caught up with him on Thursday morning to get his thoughts on an eventful week.

“It was good to get out there on Tuesday night,” he said. “When I came up from Millwall I wanted to get some game time in men’s football so it felt good to get out there and show the fans and obviously the manager what I can do. Hopefully I’ve given the gaffer something to think about for the weekend.

“When you go 1-0 up inside 30 seconds it does calm you down a bit. I didn’t really feel nervous as such but when you get a goal so quickly it does just make everything a little bit easier and help you relax. It made it a bit easier to bed in with the team and it was good.

“Right back is my position so it’s something I’m used to but the step up to men’s football is different. There were obviously different parts of the game where I got tested and things like that, but I felt pretty assured and confident out there. There were a lot of good players around me, we’ve got some good talkers at the back, so I enjoyed it." 

“It was nice to be attacking right in front of our fans in the second half," he told us. "You obviously hear different shouts and things like that but it was nice to start showing them why I’ve been brought to the club.

"They come to watch us perform and if I can give them something that makes them cheer and shout then I’m doing my job. It’s important to build that relationship early on and show them what I can do, and I appreciated their support." 

Speaking about his decision to make the long switch up north, he said: “I knew at Millwall that there wasn’t really a chance to play first team football there this season.

"I knew I had to get out on loan. In the process of sorting something I said to people that staying down south would have been nice, but I always also said I would go wherever I needed to go to play football.

"I was always willing to do that. I’ve lived away from my parents since I was 16 so even though it’s a long way, living on my own isn’t really a problem.

“I’d heard good things about the club before I came here and I’ve seen that it’s a well-run place with nice people. I’m not quite sure how I’ve ended up here but I’m happy that it’s turned out this way and I’m glad to be here." 

On what the coaching staff at Millwall want to see from his loan spell at Brunton Park, he said: "I’ve obviously spoken to a lot of the staff at Millwall and they just want me to come out and play men’s football. 

"Tuesday was only my second competitive game at men’s level so they need me to test myself in this environment. I agreed with that and I knew coming into the season that I had to do that. I’m happy I’m here and all I can do is prove to Millwall that I can make that step up and obviously help Carlisle along the way." 

“I know Tom Miller in front of me is a good player but I’m happy to be here and try and push those boys," he told us. "No one gets in the starting 11 just like that, and I know I just need to give the manager something to think about like I hopefully did on Tuesday night.

"We’ve got a really good bunch of lads and there are some good players here. Competition is good and I would be happy anywhere across the back four, but we’ll see how it goes. I’ve just come here to challenge and put my name out there and see how far I can take myself.

“You can tell that everyone’s ambition in the changing room is to get promoted this year. From what I’ve seen already the players are a good, talented bunch and the dressing room is capable of going up this season.

"When looking at which club I was going to come to you do want to be a part of project for the season where you’re looking to get promoted. It gives everyone something to work towards."

“I obviously need to prove myself but I’ve just come here to showcase to the fans, Carlisle and Millwall, what I’m about and what I can do," he commented. "Obviously you want to prove your point as such, but I don’t feel the pressure, I just want to come here and enjoy it.

"The whole point of me coming up here is to help the team and the squad. I just want to be as successful as possible, whether I’m starting or in the match day squad. That’s my mindset, to just take it as it goes and help where I can."

But did the distance from London to Carlisle play any part in his thoughts as he was making his decision?

“When I first got the call about potentially coming up here my first thought was ‘that’s a long way!’ but it isn’t too bad," he said. "I wasn’t too nervous coming up either. I spoke to Lee Dykes on my way up and he said the lads would be great with me.

"During your first couple of days you’ve got to be a bit quiet but now I’ve settled in and got to know the boys a little bit better. They’re a welcoming bunch and it’s been a really easy transition.

“I’m originally from Dover which is a little bit more like Carlisle than London! London is a completely different world - it’s 100mph all of the time. When I was driving up here it was nice to see fields and things like that, even though I did worry I was going to the wrong place.

It’s a nice area, I’ve bedded in well with the boys and I couldn’t have asked for much more from my first week in terms of already playing a game and feeling as comfortable here as I do." 

And we couldn't let him go without raising the subject of his famous namesake.

“I see loads of stuff on social media about my name all the time," he said. "Even my family do it to me! It’s just one of those things.

"I’m sure the boys will be in for a treat when I do my initiation song because I’ll try and give them some James Brown back.

"I’ve just got to take it haven’t I, there’s nothing I can do. It’s a good laugh and I’m sure it won’t be the last I’m going to hear of it!”

Click HERE to watch an interview with James Brown on iFollow United now.   

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