Justham: Meeting with Jones made it clear I had to move on

Former Luton keeper Elliot JusthamFormer Luton keeper Elliot Justham
Former Luton keeper Elliot Justham
A face-to-face meeting with Town boss Nathan Jones was enough for goalkeeper Elliot Justham to know that he needed to seek a move away from Kenilworth Road to further his career.

The 25-year-old finished the season as number one with Luton after Mark Tyler’s departure and Jonathan Mitchell was recalled by Derby.

However, with Jones making it clear he was going to bring in another keeper over the summer, Justham went to see the manager to ask him about his future.

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Speaking exclusively to the News/Gazette, Justham, who had his contract cancelled by mutual consent last week, said: “I asked Nathan what the situation was, asked him face to face, looked in his eye and said am I going to be your number one?

“And I got my answer by him delaying slightly, so I knew where I stood, which is no problem, no problem at all because it’s football.

“I have enjoyed my time at Luton and think I’ve come a long way and now is the time to play some games and try my hand elsewhere.

“I approached the manager as he was happy for me to stay on and fight it out with whoever comes in.

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“But I made a decision with my family and other people close to me and the decision was to ask to leave.”

When asked if he was disappointed not to be given the chance to establish himself in Town’s first team, Justham continued; “Maybe a little bit, but I’ve got no grudges, I don’t hold grudges.

“If he (Jones) feels it’s right to move on with someone else, he didn’t say I wasn’t going to be number one, but I think we all know that he’s going to bring in someone of a number one calibre, which is fair enough.

“Me personally, I back my own ability to be number one and felt it was best for me to ask him if we could part ways and I think eventually he saw it from my point of view.”

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Justham had originally signed from East Thurrock United back in June 2013, as Mark Tyler’s understudy.

He always knew he would have to learn his trade at Kenilworth Road first, but thought he had done enough over his 40 first team appearances to warrant a longer run in the side.

He said: “Everyone wants to play, but I knew signing here I wasn’t going to play straight away, of course I did, because I had to learn to be a pro footballer.

“I’ve come a long way in three years, and think I’ve progressed as a goalkeeper from where I’ve come from, which some people may have forgotten.

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“I think, no disrespect, that I’ve done my time as a number two and when I’ve had a run of games, I think I’ve done okay.

“But I think I can go on again, without blowing my own trumpet, I think I’ve proved that when I’ve played, I’ve done quite well.

“So if I can get a run of games, more than seven or eight or 10, something like 20 or 25 then hopefully the best comes out of me and hopefully my new club sees that.”

Although Justham couldn’t divulge which club he was heading to, he feels confident he will get the chance he craves to be a number one.

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He added: “I can’t say yet, as it hasn’t been announced, but I am all done, so when it’s announced then people will see who it is.

“You can’t guarantee anywhere that you’re going to play.

“But I’ve got a good feeling that where I’m signing, I’m going to hopefully have a good chance of playing, so I’m looking forward to getting a run of games.”