Ryan Taylor revealed that Joey Barton sought him out about joining him before it was announced that he would be Fleetwood Town’s head coach.
Taylor’s former Newcastle United team-mate was revealed as the successor to John Sheridan just before the end of last season.
He started in June with Taylor becoming his latest signing upon his release from Indian Super League side ATK.
“He told me he wanted me in his plans for next season,” said Taylor, who hopes to make his Town debut this weekend.
“As soon as a manager tells you that, especially being a friend as well, it was a no-brainer.
“Circumstances held me back until I was right, then the timing was not great, but I’m here now and ready to get going.
“The ambitions of the football club and Joey and the staff are to go up.
“It is great to see that he has got that drive and ambition without ever having managed before.
“With this group of lads they are so together and we have every chance.
“If we keep everyone fit I’m sure at the end of the season we will be there or thereabouts.”
Taylor, who played with Barton between 2009 and 2011, has already seen the changes in his former team-mate.
He said: “It will be a different dynamic. He can shout at you from 40 yards rather than five now!
“Every time I see him he just looks so comfortable in his role.
“I’m sure for him every day is about learning.
“I’m looking forward to getting going and seeing what the new chapter is about.”
Barton had said he was embarrassed to offer Taylor and his fellow new boy, Ross Wallace, the amount of money he did given their standings in the game.
However, Taylor said money was a secondary consideration after penning a deal that will initially keep him at Highbury until January.
He said: “I know where he is coming from but, as a person and a player who is now 34, it is about enjoying football.
“I’m sure in January we will chat again but, for me, it is about getting playing and getting a smile back on my face because football is all I know.”