NEWPORT County midfielder Mark Byrne spent last season in a midfield tandem with a Champions League winning Netherlands international capped 74-times, but admits he's far happier at Rodney Parade.

The Ireland midfielder has swapped Underhill, Barnet and a spell alongside the legendary Edgar Davids to be reunited with Justin Edinburgh, his former Rushden boss.

Edinburgh tried to sign Byrne 12 months ago, having managed him for a season on loan from Nottingham Forest, winning two player of the year awards at Nene Park after making 44 appearances.

For the past three seasons he's been with Barnet, but Edinburgh finally landed his man after talks that began back in May and despite only signing an initial six-month deal, Byrne, who seems certain to start the campaign against Wycombe a week on Saturday, is thrilled to be playing under Edinburgh again.

"I'd have to pick Justin over Edgar Davids as being more fun to play under," the ex-Forest man diplomatically told the Argus when posed the slightly unfair question.

"But I definitely learned a lot from Edgar, he was relentless as a player, he came to Barnet and taught us some good lessons.

"A few of the young lads were scared of him, he was a ruthless player, that's what he is all about and I got a lot out of playing with him."

However, Byrne is happier where he is now.

"I really wanted to come here, I spoke to Justin over the summer and just hoped that chance would come so that I could come down," he said.

"I worked with him at Rushden and he is a great manager, as soon as I knew he was interested, it was exactly the move I wanted.

"First impressions have been really good, I think I'm going to be very happy here.

"It's a close-knit bunch of lads, a very close dressing room, but luckily I know a few of the boys because I've played with them before.

"They eased me in, I stayed with Aaron O'Connor for a while who I already knew and it makes the transition easier."

Byrne is singing from the same hymn sheet as his new teammates in respect of setting targets for the current campaign.

There has been no talk this summer of the play-offs or a promotion push with the watchword for County abundantly clear, 'consistency.'

"We want to be consistent, not start well and finish poorly or the other way around, if you're consistent you've always got a good chance of finishing where you want," he said.

"But I've got to set my own targets as well, I really wanted to come here and now I need to make an impression.

"I've had three 90 minutes now, I feel I've played well and hopefully I can get a place in the team and stay here for the rest of the season."