JOHN-JOE O’Toole knew he wanted to be a part of Burton Albion after speaking to Nigel Clough about the club.
The 30-year-old midfielder will become a Burton Albion player on a two-year deal once his contract at Northampton Town expires this summer and O’Toole joined iFollow Brewers to discuss his move this week.
After five seasons at Northampton Town, O’Toole turned down the opportunity to remain at Sixfields to join up with Albion, and is relishing getting stuck in to pre-season and the 2019/20 campaign ahead.
“(The manager) told me about his aspirations for the club, and what the club is about, and I wanted to be a part of that,” said O’Toole.
“It’s somewhere I’ve played before, League One. I back myself to play there again and I’m just looking forward to it.
“I was in League Two last year and there were some tough games - but League One is even harder so I’m going to need to make sure I’m at it.
“I’ve heard the facilities are very good up at St George’s Park and the pitches are brilliant.
"It’s always good to get the deal done sooner because the longer you leave it, the less likely you are to get what you want and it starts to get a bit nervy towards the back end of the window.
“I was just delighted to get it done and I just want to concentrate on getting myself ready for pre-season, which is going to be hard from what I gather, but hopefully it’s enjoyable and we’re fit and ready for the first game of the season.”
O’Toole is not coming into a squad completely new to him, and there will be a few familiar faces for the former Irish U21 international to meet when pre-season training begins on July 1.
“I know a couple of them - I played with Marv (Marvin Sordell) at Northampton and he’s from around my way in Harrow,” said O’Toole. “He’s a good lad with a lot of ability.
“He probably didn’t play as much as he wanted to last year but he’s a good player.
“I know Quinny (Stephen Quinn) from the Ireland U21s and my brief spell at Sheffield United, and he’s a very good player as well.
“I just know the others from playing against them from time-to-time but it seems like a really good group and they have a bit of everything in terms of what you need to progress in this league.”