Craig Bratt catches up with midfield ace Morais
Filipe Morais’ vision is clear. He is a winner – two seasons ago he was promoted to the Championship with Bolton Wanderers and it’s Crawley Town where the Portuguese midfielder wants to achieve his next piece of success. “I didn’t come here to not get promoted and not be successful. I have a pretty good five years and I want to continue that here,” he said.
Coming to the club was an easy decision for Morais. He knew he had other options when his contract expired at the Macron Stadium, but he also knew how keen the Reds were to sign him. “I knew Crawley wanted me for a while because I knew Warren Feeney from when we played together at Oldham, but at the time I still thought I was signing a new contract at Bolton.
“I was weighing up all my options and I had offers from abroad, but I decided I had to stay in the UK for my family. I thought the way Crawley pursued me that it felt right and it was a good choice for me.”
The 32-year-old took a punt on Harry Kewell and co. and now finds himself being one of the first names on the team sheet, which is something he didn’t expect when he put pen to paper in July. “To be honest, I didn’t think id be a regular starter here and play 90 minutes – I was prepared to write August off because I needed to get fitter as I didn’t join the squad until quite late in pre-season.
Referred to affectionately as ‘The Postman’ at Bolton because he always delivers – a name the Reds faithful have now adopted – Morais came close to getting off the mark at Port Vale last Saturday. His stunning strike may have hit the side netting, but his impact in previous games has already given Crawley fans a taste of what the midfield maestro can achieve.
Two assists for two Ollie Palmer headers in our first two games is perhaps something we may see much more of this season. “I’m getting stronger with every game, and it’s brilliant to get the two assists so far because that’s what I do best, but I need to try and get some goals as well,” he adds.
His three games for the Reds have already shown Morais the difference in play in the fourth tier, saying the pace of play makes opposition more hungry. “The game in League Two is much slower but teams are desperate to beat you. Especially someone like me who has played at a higher level, players seem to try even harder to beat you. It is what it is.”
Despite this, he believes the club have the chance to do something this special this season, with Morais eye firmly on his long-term goal. “I really enjoy it here and it’s really humbling because it’s a small club and everyone knows each other. My family has never been so well looked after at a club before.
“It’s all about keeping the standards high and I’m starting see a difference already in training. I’m really confident that if we keep doing what we’re doing, we will have a really great season.”
This interview first appeared in Saturday's edition of our matchday programme The Reds.