Mal Benning sat down with Salop for his first interview after signing a year-long deal today.
A left wing-back by trade, Mal has provided an impressive attacking return in his career, notching 20 goals and 31 assists from defence.
He joins from fellow League One side Port Vale where he was a stalwart in their 2022/23 campaign, featuring in 39 matches of their 46 matches.
Mal discussed his move, his first day at the club and what fans can expect from him on the pitch.
On signing for Shrewsbury:
“I’m buzzing to get it over the line.
"I know Shrewsbury did quite well last year and I’ve come up against them a few times in my career. They’ve always been good to play against so I’m buzzing to be here.
"To meet up with the gaffer and the lads has been ledge.”
On how the transfer came about:
“It came about randomly to be fair. It came about after George Nurse got injured, so it’s been about a week in talks with both clubs.”
On himself as a player:
“My whole career I’ve been a left-back or a left wing-back.
"I like attacking and trying to contribute towards goals, crossing and obviously on the front foot and getting the team attacking – contributing with goals, assists and crosses.”
On the attacking side of his game:
“I like to get involved going forward. It’s always an added bonus being a contributing factor to the team’s success going forwards but obviously, as a left wing-back, you also have your defensive responsibilities which I obviously need to contribute to as well. But I’d like to think going forwards I’ll add some goals and assists.”
On the defensive side of his game:
“Just on the front foot obviously getting close people. Throughout my career I’ve learnt a lot on that side so I’m a front-footed defender trying to get my head down and nick the ball off them.”
Key aims for this season:
“Obviously just to push the team and push myself. I want to get myself into the team and get as many games as I can. Obviously we’re in League One and the standard is very good compared to previous years.
"I want to work hard in training and get myself into the team and get as many games as I can.”
On his personality in the dressing room:
“I’m quite quiet to be fair. I’ll mingle with the lads, join in with the banter and get to know them.
"My first day here has been great. I’m looking forward to getting to know them and hopefully just focus on the job at hand and have a good time with the lads in the dressing room.”
On his 2022/23 campaign:
“It was a very variable campaign. Off the back of getting promoted at Wembley, we started off very well, myself included, up until Christmas but after Christmas we struggled with results.
"But like I said, I played quite a lot of games in League One so I’m used to it and know what it’s about so hopefully I can bring a bit of experience into the team as well."
Ready and raring to go?
“Yeah definitely, I haven’t had many clubs in my career to be fair so there’s always settling in but the lads have been great, I spoke to Chey before I came, I know him briefly and he said the lads are great. My first session with Matt and Marcus and all the coaching staff today was great too."