Proud Flanagan has eyes on the first-team after signing pro terms at Cobblers
Central defender 'can't wait' for pre-season
Young defender Josh Flanagan has his eyes on a potential place in Cobblers' first-team next season after signing his first professional deal with the club last week.
The 17-year-old joined Max Dyche and Liam Cross in signing pro terms on Tuesday, but he knows the hard work has only just begun.
"It's a very proud moment for me and my family, " he said. "It's been a long road but I'm very happy with to be here in this position.
"It's a great feeling. I've had a tough, competitive few years because I had to break into the youth team, I got a scholar and then all the boys this season have worked their socks off.
"I was a bit of a late developer because I only joined the academy at U15 level. I had been playing Sunday league football for my whole life over in Milton Keynes and Bedford.
"I went to an open day trial and Mark Lyons signed me four weeks later over at Moulton, but I'm now going to work as hard as I can."
Flanagan has a taste of first-team experience after making the bench for Northampton's second game of the season at Shrewsbury Town, but now he wants more.
"I was there for the 2-1 win at Shrewsbury at the start of the season and it was brilliant to be involved in that," he added. "Unfortunately I didn't get on the pitch but I can't wait until I'm fully immersed into that environment.
"I'll probably have a week off but then I'll be straight back at it ahead of pre-season because it's a completely different game at this level and I want to be ready."
Flanagan worked with Town's new permanent manager, Jon Brady, in the academy, as well as first-team coach Marc Richards.
He continued: "Jon's known me for two or three years because he saw me when I was in the U16s and he actually brought me through the club and gave me a lot of confidence.
"He taught me how to play the men's game and it's amazing now to be involved with him in the first-team."