Left Winger Joins Up Ahead of Pre-season TrainingMicky Mellon has added another new face to his squad with left winger Junior Brown joining up.
It gives the manager another good option in his squad with making over 200 appearances in the Football League and Conference but still only being 26 years of age.
Junior was at the Greenhous Meadow yesterday to complete his medical and then put pen to paper on a one year deal with Town.
ShrewsWeb sat down with the Crewe born player to speak about his move to be reunited with ex gaffer Micky Mellon:”“It wasn’t a tough decision to come here - I’ve known Micky for a considerable amount of years and the chance to come and play under him was a no-brainer really.
“He brought some of the best football out in me so with the lads here and the momentum after promotion, it would have been daft to turn down an opportunity like this.”
Micky Mellon signed Junior to Fleetwood when he was in charge of the side in the Conference. Fleetwood won promotion out of the Conference and then progressed to League 1 with Junior making over 100 appearances:”Micky’s got his own playing style and he wants to play total football.
“He knows how to get the best out of me and at this stage of my career; it was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.
“When I was in the side there we were known as a team that won by playing attractive football and we had success under him.
“I’ve seen the highs under him and this is an opportunity to come here and achieve more success.”
Since taking over the managerial hot seat at Town last year Micky Mellon has got his new side playing football and Junior is hoping he will get the best out of him again:”It’s his style and I don’t think it will ever change.
“He got the best out of me and in a way that suited me, and the way Shrewsbury play, it will suit me as well.
“Hopefully I can come here and improve the squad.”
Junior progressed through the youth ranks at Crewe but didn’t really get his chance with the Railwaymen. This meant a drop down to the Conference but the experience helped him improve as a player and mentally:”At the time it was difficult dropping out of the League, especially when you’re at a club so renowned for producing players as Crewe.
“It was disappointing but I went with it, made the most of the situation and played a few good years in the Conference and managed to get my way back into the League.
“Now I’m back in the League I want to stay there and do the best I can for the rest of my career.”
Since leaving Fleetwood Junior has had spells with Tranmere, Oxford United and Mansfield Town playing in the Football League:”I’ve spent the rest of my career in the League.
“It’s difficult because at times you might not get the games you want to get and you might not play as much football as you want to play.
“But you have to seize opportunities and going to Oxford last year then going on loan to Mansfield wasn’t what I planned or wanted to do.
“But it was the best way to get regular football and it’s kept me in the League and got Micky to see what I can do given me another opportunity to go again, and in a higher league.
“Hopefully I can put in some good performances this coming season and we can achieve success.”
Naturally left-footed Junior brings a balance to the Town side and another option to allow Town to be more flexible with their formation next term. He enjoys playing on the left wing and also playing under a manager who gives you the freedom to play:”I started off as a left back under Micky and he moved me further forward in the first season in the League and it gave me a bit more freedom and licence to get forwards.
“He gives you freedom to play and he gives you confidence, and if you be confident and trust each other then he will show the trust in you.
“He wants his players to play and playing up there, I feel I can bring something to the team.
“Left wing is my best position. From there I can do a range of things - I can drive inside pick the ball up in pockets of space and go and play off the front men.”
Micky Mellon’s recruitment over the summer has been to mainly bring in players who are experienced in the Football League and at League 1 level. Junior is another one who fits that profile and believes he can add to the balance of the side:”You want to have the right balance in your squad between younger players and older ones.
“I’m at an age where I’m experienced but not as experienced as the older ones.
“But I’m still hungry and looking to get as far as I can in the game.
“So hopefully I can bring that edge and fit in with the lads.”
The step up to League 1 is one everyone at the club is looking forward to but one everyone knows will be a tough test. It is something that Junior believes his new Town side with be up to the task:”It’s going to be a tough task jumping up a league but you take that momentum that was generated from last season and try to carry that through.
“With the side he had it’s important to keep that core and the team spirit, but the additions he’s made will hopefully make us stronger.
With the paper work all completed on the deal before the start of the pre-season training programme it means Junior can focus on the hard work that Micky and his coaches have in store for the players:”I’m pleased it’s done and dusted and now I can focus on the task in hand now of getting fit over the next month and focused and ready for the games.
“Having time off in the summer is good but there’s nothing like getting to the end of pre-season because you know the games are coming.
“It’s going to be hard work but that’s all part and parcel of pre-season.
“I’ve had many pre-seasons now and you have to grind through them, but you aim to get through that because you’re looking forward to the games.