New signing Jordan Turnbull believes the Cobblers squad should be ‘right up the top half’ of the Sky Bet League One table, rather than battling against relegation.
The 23-year-old signed on at Sixfields for two-and-a-half years on Thursday, cutting short a season-long loan spell at Scottish Premiership side strugglers Partick Thistle to make the transfer from his parent club Coventry City.
The Trowbridge-born central defender has joined a Cobblers team that is currently third bottom in Sky Bet League One, and facing a fight to preserve their league one status.
But having spoken to manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink about his plans for the club, and seen for himself the players currently in the Town squad, with more to come, he is confident the team will soon be looking up, rather than down.
Turnbull was part of the Coventry City team relegated from league one last season, and asked if it was a concern he was joining a team lying so low in the table, he made it clear he is relaxed about that situation.
“First of all you look at where the team is, and you make yourself aware of it, but I am aware of the squad here and know a lot of the players, either personally or by playing against them,” said Turnbull, a former England Under-20 international.
“You can see in this squad of players that the ability is there to be right up the top half of the table, so it wasn’t anything I was worried about.
“I am more excited about the challenge of going out and helping the team.
“I am 100 per cent sure we can do it (get out of trouble), there are a lot of games left in the season, so there is nothing too much to worry about and hopefully we kick-start that soon.”
Following Coventry’s relegation to league two last season, Turnbull had the chance to activate a clause in his contract that said he could leave the club for free, but he eventually made the loan switch to Partick.
I am 100 per cent sure we can do it (get out of trouble), there are a lot of games left in the season, so there is nothing too much to worry about and hopefully we kick-start that soonCobblers defender Jordan Turnbull
And he says that making that move was simply a case of him playing football at the highest standard he could.
The Southampton Academy graduate has played all of his senior football in England at league one level, and he believes the fact he is now back at that standard with the Cobblers justifies his decision to head north of the border in the summer.
Asked about the clause at the Ricoh Arena, Turnbull said: “It was something that was put in my contract by my agent, the club agreed it, and it was just something that was there.
“I could have used it to leave for free, but the way things worked out I had an opportunity to go up to Scotland on loan, and did that.
“I didn’t worry about too many things, I just wanted to go and play football, which was main thing for me.
“I have played a lot of games this season, I think I have performed well, and ultimately that has brought me here, so I am happy with that.
“I am happy with how things have worked out, and now hopefully we can have a successful end to the season.”
Turnbull became the fifth new Cobblers signing of the January transfer window, and was brought in to bolster the central defensive stocks of the squad, with Aaron Pierre and Leon Barnett currently out with injury.
He joins a large squad at Sixfields, with more than 30 players competing for starts, but he believes that is a positive.
“I know there is a big squad here, with a lot of players and everybody fighting for their place, but I think that is good, and is healthy competition,” said Turnbull, who spent two seasons on loan at Swindown Town from 2014 to 2016
“It means everybody has to be at it every day in training to show the manager they deserve their spot in the starting 11 come the weekend.
“That is what I intend to do, and started that process in training on Thursday, and we’ll see what happens.”