Experienced winger Jamal Campbell-Ryce became one of United’s latest ever deadline day signings on Wednesday when his paperwork was lodged and received with just one minute to go of the January transfer window.
Speaking ahead of his first training session with the club on Thursday morning, he talked about the move and what he hopes to get from the next five months at Brunton Park.
“I’ve been talking to the manager for a few weeks now, so I knew of the interest from the club,” he said. “I obviously know Keith [Curle] and Colin [West] from my Notts County days and we have a great relationship. I was up for coming here as soon as I heard of their interest.
“It ended up getting done lastminute.com on Wednesday night, so that was a bit of a nightmare, but hopefully everything is sorted and I can get on with playing games.”
“When you get to making a decision about which club to join, it is easier when you know somebody well,” he agreed. “That’s how it is with Keith. He was fantastic with me at Notts County and I’m sure that’ll be the same here.
“I still keep in touch with Gary Liddle as well, he’s a good friend of mine, and he speaks highly of the club. I can’t wait to get on with it now.”
Having played at a number of clubs across all levels of the game, we wondered if nerves still kicked in when the time comes to meet new team mates.
“I still get nervous when I go to a new club, but it’s a healthy kind of nervous,” he explained. “There’s excitement because you know you’ve got to come in and impress your peers.
“I always feel it’s important to do that and that’s why I’m raring to go. Hopefully we’ll get results and we can make a promotion push. The club has had some positive results recently so it’s a good time to be coming here. We’ll be looking for that to continue.
“This is a fantastic club and I’m just hoping I can help Carlisle pick up points. With just a couple of days to the Wycombe game there’s no time like the present, so we’ll just dig in and kick on. Hopefully we’ll be coming back with the win.”
The Cumbrians have been put to the sword by Campbell-Ryce’s pace and direct approach on a number of occasions over the years, and the nippy wide man is looking to bring those attributes to his new club.
“I’m an attacker, I like to create and score goals, and hopefully I’ll be doing that through the second half of the season,” he told us. “I see myself as an exciting player and I like to get at people. That’ll be no different here.
“You’ll see me getting the ball and trying to make things happen. I’d probably say that I prefer to assist a striker to score than to score myself.
“I get a real buzz if I’ve set somebody else up – so remind me I’ve said that if I don’t square it to somebody when I’ve decided to shoot instead! I love it when my strikers score goals so that’s what I’ll be trying to help them to do here.”
“It’s no secret that I’m in the back-end of my playing career now but I’ve still got plenty of legs in me,” he continued. “I have over 500 games under my belt so I bring that experience with me. If I can get around the young lads and help them out, that will be good.
“I don’t think I have anything to prove to anyone else at this stage of my career. For myself, I just want to play for as long as possible. You always get doubters in any walk of life, so it becomes about proving them wrong.”
And having said goodbye to the New Hive last night, he said: “I really enjoyed my time at Barnet. When things come knocking sometimes you have to open the door and start a new chapter. This is definitely a new chapter for me, but it’s one I’m excited about.
“As for moving from London to Carlisle - I must love the game! In all seriousness, the move to Barnet was my first time back in London for a long time.
“I’ve been here, there and everywhere through many years of my career, so nobody can tar me with the brush that I’m a southerner who doesn’t like playing up north.
“I’ve got a nice feeling about being here and I’m looking forward to getting on with it.”
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