NEW defender Harry Worley admits he agreed to join Newport County AFC because of a desire to play for Justin Edinburgh.

The 24-year-old former Chelsea and Leicester City defender, once a six-figure signing for Jose Mourinho, is desperate for more regular football after seeing his progress stall in a three-year stint at Oxford United.

However, manager Edin-burgh rates him highly and made him his number one defensive transfer target, a fact not lost on the Cheshire-born centre-back who started out at Stockport County.

“The manager was certainly a massive influence in me deciding to come here. People in the game can’t speak highly enough about him,” he said.

“I am good friends with (fellow summer capture from Oxford) Adam Chapman and he’s very enthusiastic about both Justin and his assistant Jimmy Dack.

“I also know Lenny (Pidgeley, goalkeeper) who was at Chelsea at the same time as me and it’s a squad I’ve followed closely, I watched the play-off final and was desperate for you, I mean us, to win it!”

Worley is aware that he faces serious competition to get into the Exiles’ starting XI, with Argus player of the year Tony James, Ismail Yakubu, Byron Anthony and Andrew Hughes all rivals in central defence.

“That’s been made clear to me,” he explained.

“The gaffer explained about the quality already at the club and that’s how I would want it, it keeps you on your toes.

“It’s far too comfortable when you know you’ll get picked however you perform, it isn’t a healthy situation.”

Worley has no concerns about County adapting to life in League Two from what he’s seen of Rodney Parade and South Wales.

“I’m a single man and it is no issue at all to me to come and move to a new area, it’s part and parcel of the job,” he said.

“It seems like a nice part of the world and the facilities at Rodney Parade are impressive and the pitch is apparently improving as well.

“But from what I know of the squad and talking to the gaffer, I don’t have any reservations about how well we can do.

“I’ve been in League Two a while and the standard is pretty consistent.

He added: “You don’t get many stand-out teams or individuals.

“And you generally find the best teams who come up from the Conference are ready to play at that level, including us.”