Billy Clifford joined the Reds a year ago today, and he spoke positively about his first year with the club on Thursday afternoon.
The midfielder joined on a free transfer after leaving Boreham Wood at the end of the 2015-16 campaign and made the move to West Sussex before the start of last season.
“I’ve really enjoyed my first year – before coming to the club I didn’t know too much about Crawley,” he admitted.
“I’ve played a lot of football compared to what I’d had before joining and that was always the main aim really.
“I wanted to get back to enjoying my football and I think I’m definitely doing that.
“I made 42 appearances in all competitions last year and that showed. It’s all well and good just playing but you have to be enjoying it too and so that’s why I feel it’s gone so well.”
The former Chelsea, Walsall and Colchester United man pointed to the environment of the club as a whole as being crucial to him settling and enjoying his first year with the side.
“The people around the club have been brilliant, as have all of my teammates and I’m really looking forward to the year ahead and working with the new management duo and the new players."
This summer saw a new Head Coach and Assistant Coach arrive at the club, and Billy revealed that pre-season so far has been hard work – but it’s a fresh start for everyone in what is a competitive squad.
“Pre-season has been good, the manager has come in and been very intense and as soon as he came in he was keen to get his message across as to how he wants us to play.”
“He’s very hands on and everyone has taken that on and worked with him and given everything.
“I’m really looking forward to the first game of the season against Port Vale – and there’s a lot competition for places in the team.
“When a new manager comes in it’s always a clean slate for everyone in the squad.
“You could have been out on loan, or not played a lot, but the manager takes everyone for face value.
“He’s told everyone that if they work hard then there’s places up for grabs – so it’s up to us now to show him what we can do.
“It’s healthy – there’s no real standout players for selection so everyone’s got an opportunity here.”