Johnny McMurray excited by Crusaders plans to get back to the top

New Crusaders recruit Johnny McMurray feels he is joining the club at the right time.

Friday, 18th June 2021, 9:43 am
Updated Friday, 18th June 2021, 9:44 am

A number of clubs were keen to snap up the striker, but he agreed a switch to Seaview after his release from Larne revealing he was impressed with boss Stephen Baxter s plans for the Crues.

And after a challenging time battling back from a serious knee injury whilst at Inver Park the 26-year-old feels he too is getting back to his best again.

"I feel like I'm getting back to the level that I was a few years ago when I was at Ballymena," said McMurray.

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New Crusaders striker Johnny McMurray
New Crusaders striker Johnny McMurray

"Obviously the injury knocked me a bit when I was at Larne, but I feel that I'm back to where I want to be and this move has come at a good time for me.

"I think the style and the way Stephen wants to play will suit me in every way.

"Also the way the club is run it's a totally professional set up from top to bottom which is great.

"I'm just glad it has all been sorted now and I can concentrate on my football again.

"I had spoken to a few clubs and I just wanted to get it done.

"After speaking with Stephen and my family, Crusaders seemed to be the best fit for me in terms of everything.

"Stephen spoke of the style he wants to play and I feel it will get the best out of me, similar to how it was when I was at Ballymena.

"Also I had the full time option at Larne and now I'm moving to a club which is almost full time which suits me at this point in time.

"I didn't really want to be training every day and this allows me to go and do other things that I want to do.

"As I say II had spoken to other clubs and it was a tough decision to make, but the Crues ticked the boxes.

"Stephen sold me his vision of where he wants to take the club and the signings he wants to make to strengthen the team.

"I know over the last couple of seasons they haven't been where they probably would want to be, but they weren't far away either.

"I want to be at a club that is going to be challenging and for me the Crues are my best option.

"I'm just looking forward to getting started now."

McMurray knows it will be another battle at the top of the Danske Bank Premiership next season with so many quality teams pushing for honours now, but he feels the Crues are heading in the right direction to be part of the mix.

"The league is so competitive now compared to when I first started playing," he said.

"Back then Linfield were beating everyone and it was hard to compete.

"But now, even the so-called smaller sides are more than competitive and can beat anyone.

"The overall standard has really improved with so many quality players coming into the league.

"I know Crusaders want to be back up there challenging for the European spots and the major honours, and after speaking to Stephen about the plans he has I don't see any reason why they won't be."

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