Goalkeeper Jay Lynch is ready for the next step in his career after completing his move to newly-promoted AFC Fylde.
The Coasters fended off competition from several other clubs to land the National League North goalkeeper of the year, who has penned a two-year deal after leaving Salford City earlier in the summer.
The 24-year-old admitted that his mind was made up the moment he learned of Fylde’s interest.
Lynch said: “It was a couple of weeks ago that I first heard about the interest. I spoke to the manager and he showed me around the place, and from there I was keen to get it sorted as soon as possible. The deal has gone very smoothly and I’m really pleased to be here.
“The facilities are top-class but I have known that ever since playing here with Salford early last season. Now I can’t wait to play here in a Fylde shirt.
“I felt like I had done enough at Salford and that it was time for a new challenge. I wanted to make the step up to the National League and I’m grateful to Fylde for giving me that chance.
“Salford are my hometown club, so I felt some loyalty towards them but I had to step out of my comfort zone.”
Lynch arrives with a strong pedigree following spells with Manchester United and Bolton, and he added: “I was with Manchester United as a kid and left when I was 15 to join Bolton. I spent seven years there, signed my first pro contract and made the bench a few times in the Premier League, so it was an enjoyable time.
“I needed games at that point because being on the bench wasn’t enough for me. I had to go out there and do it for myself. I joined Accrington for a few weeks but it didn’t quite work out, so I went to Salford and managed to play regularly and do well. “But now is the time to start working my way back up.”
The new man will go head to head with former Chelsea stopper Rhys Taylor for the number one shirt next season and admits he is relishing the competition.
“I watched Rhys a couple of times last season and he is a very good goalkeeper. It’s a different kind of competition between goalkeepers because you have a good bond together.
“Whoever goes out there on the pitch will have nothing but well wishes from the other.
“At the same time no one likes to be on the bench. I will bide my time if that is the case and keep working. Hopefully the manager likes what he sees.”
Dan Bradley wants to leave Fylde for family reasons, according to reports.
The 26-year-old, who joined the club from Alfreton last September and scored 11 goals to help Fylde win promotion, is understood to favour a move closer to his Birmingham base as he wife is expecting.