Raynes ready for Iron challenge
Michael Raynes admits it has been a big move joining Scunthorpe but is determined to make the step up.
By Ben Collins
Last Updated: 18/02/10 2:52pm
New Scunthorpe defender Michael Raynes admits it has been a big move joining the Iron but is determined to make the step up at Glanford Park.
Raynes boosted Scunthorpe's Championship survival bid by making a deadline-day move from League One strugglers Stockport.
Despite being only 22, Raynes had already made over 150 first-team appearances for his hometown club but felt the time was right to leave cash-strapped County, who remain in administration.
"Stockport are in the process of a big change," he told skysports.com.
"I was stuck in the old ways of Stockport and how it used to be, and I think it was time to move on. A lot of the old faces have gone and they're bringing a lot of new ones in.
"Everyone knows the situation with trying to get new owners but hopefully it's starting to get better now and there is some light at the end of the tunnel.
"There's a lot of good people at Stockport and I'd like to thank them for everything they've done for me.
"But that chapter in my career's closed now, I got the chance to play in the Championship and I couldn't possibly turn that down.
"It's the first time I've been away from Stockport and the first time I've put a different kit on. It's somewhere completely different but they've got a decent bunch of lads here so I think I'm settling in quite well.
"It's a big change for me and my family but it's a new chapter in my career and I'm looking forward to the challenge.
"We got to play at West Brom last week and we play at St James' Park in a few weeks' time," Raynes added.
"Opportunities like that don't come round very often so I had to grab it with both hands.
"I just hope to do the best I can for Scunthorpe and prove myself in the Championship."
This is the first chance for Raynes to play in the second tier having played in League One and Two with Stockport.
So far he has made two appearances at right-back, filling in for the suspended Cliff Byrne, but now Raynes has sets his sights on replacing Rob Jones or David Mirfin in his favoured role of centre-half.
"I want to force my way in," he said. "I've not come here to sit on the bench, I want to push the boys as hard as I can to get a place.
"They've got two decent centre-halves here but I'm hoping to get as much as I can off them, hopefully improve myself and be up to the standards to play at this level.
"I think it's a lot quicker and a lot stronger in the Championship, and I've seen that already.
"But with the likes of Gary Hooper, Paul Hayes and Jonathan Forte playing against you every day in training, it's only going to improve my game so I'm just looking to get as much as I can out of it."