Defender Macaulay Gillesphey completed his return to Brunton Park this morning when he signed a two-year deal, and we caught him with him to get his thoughts just after the ink had dried on his new deal.
“It does feel a little bit strange to be coming back here again but I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “I think this is the third time I’ve done this interview, but I’m happy to be here again and I’m looking forward to the start of the season. I’ll be playing men’s football again so I’m really looking forward to it.
“It’s good that I’ve got a two-year deal, so I can just concentrate on playing football here rather than worrying about anything else. I just can’t wait to get started now.
“Knowing the club and some of the players does help when it comes to deciding which club to go to. I know what this club is about and the ambitions they have, so that did make my decision easier."
“I enjoyed both of my previous loan spells here, which also helped me make my mind up on where to go," he continued. "All of my experience in men’s football has been with this club. I made my debut at Anfield against Liverpool and obviously played quite a lot of games after that, which was good for me.
“Last season wasn’t the best for me because I had a full season of playing under-23 football, so I’m definitely glad to be back here. It was frustrating to not be playing competitive football because it doesn’t really feel the same, especially once you’ve had the experience of playing in the Football League.
“I did play some games in the Checkatrade Trophy last season, which was a good experience, as well as playing against FC Porto in the Premier League International Cup. That was all fine but I'm looking forward to playing first team football again."
On leaving his home town club, he told us: “I wouldn’t say I was sad to leave Newcastle United. I would have obviously loved to play in the first team there, but it didn’t happen and it wasn’t meant to be.
"I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds. I’ll obviously still support Newcastle because they’re my boyhood club, but I’ll move on and I’m looking forward to playing here again."
“It’s obviously a relief to get my contract sorted before pre-season," he confirmed. "It means I can concentrate on getting fit and preparing for the season.
"If you didn’t have a contract for pre-season you might panic a bit because everyone else would be starting pre-season. I’m just glad it’s all sorted now."
With a new manager to work with at his new club, he said: “I spoke to the gaffer about the way he wants to play next season and what his ambitions are.
"Everything he was saying sounded good and I’m looking forward to working with him. Everything he was saying was about getting out of this league, which is great, because everyone wants to play as high as possible.
“In terms of personal targets, I saw the video of the two goals I scored when I was here last time and I think I could probably be top goal scorer next season if I can take every free kick!
"On a serious note, I just want to do my best for the team and if I can chip in with a few goals I’ll be pleased.
“If I was to pick my position I would say centre half, but I’ll play left back or wherever else the manager asks me to. As long as I’m playing I’m not bothered!"
“I’m looking forward to the challenge and I want to come here and play as many games as I can," he concluded. "It would be nice to get a good cup run as well and I’m looking forward to what will hopefully be a successful season.
“I do feel like I’m coming here with something to prove. You always want to better yourself and I think I can do that here.
"I think I’ve grown as a player and as a man since I was here last time. I think it helps that the fans already know what I’m about and I’m looking forward to playing in front of them again."
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