Henderson joy at Pompey switch
Keeper keen to prove his worth to Cotterill
By Chris Galea. Last Updated: 08/07/11 4:00pm
Henderson: Hoping to find regular first-team football at Pompey
Portsmouth's new signing Stephen Henderson is determined to fulfil his potential after enduring a frustrating spell at Bristol City.
The 23-year-old managed just five appearances during his four-year stint with the Robins, but impressed during loan spells with York, Weymouth, Aldershot and last season at Yeovil.
The former Republic of Ireland U21 international is now looking forward to opening a new chapter in his career and competing with fellow goalkeeper Jamie Ashdown for a first-team place at Fratton Park.
"It is a great club ran by a great manager that I've got a lot of respect for and it is a side that should be pushing for promotion this year," Henderson told skysports.com.
"I heard lots of great things about the manager, Steve Cotterill, and spoke with the goalkeeping coach here, John Keeley, as we will be working together on a daily basis and those two were massive factors in me joining Portsmouth.
"It is a bit different because David James was pretty much guaranteed his place at Bristol City, but I've come here to play football.
"I've trained with Jamie Ashdown this week and he is a good keeper, but I've not come here just to make up the numbers and I'll be doing everything I can to claim the jersey and keep it for as long as possible.
"All I can do is continue to work hard and strive to improve so that the manager has a tough decision to make each week about who starts in goal.
"I was at Bristol City for four years and I just never seemed to be given the chance to break into the first-team every year.
"I'm 23 now and I felt that this was my chance to join a club that are on the up and have all the ingredients for success.
"Since I've been here it has felt like a great family club and I believe that all the stuff that has happened in the past has made everyone connected with the club stronger.
"We've got some big games in pre-season, so hopefully I'll get a few games to show what I can do and impress the gaffer.
"If I keep working hard in training and playing well in the games then I'll give myself a chance.
"It will be tough because Jamie is a solid keeper, but I'm here to play football and I'll keep pushing for that whether I'm in the team or not so that I'm ready when called upon."