Shinnie determined to lose his home comfort tag

Midfielder Andrew Shinnie wants to prove he can be a major player for the Hatters both home and away this season.

Wednesday, 18th July 2018, 11:55 am
Updated Wednesday, 18th July 2018, 11:58 am
Andrew Shinnie puts in a challenge out in Slovenia

The 29-year-old made 24 starts in League Two last term when on loan from Birmingham City, with 16 of them coming at Kenilworth Road and eight on the club’s travels.

After agreeing a two-year permanent deal in the summer, Shinnie doesn’t want to be known as someone who can only perform in front of his own fans, saying: “I don’t really want that tag on my head.

“I feel like I can play home and away, obviously not every game, the team is going to change and certain games suit certain players differently, but I will be challenging to play every game this season.

“I’ll be working hard on every aspect of my game, the physical side was tougher in League Two than it will be in League One, but I’m working hard on that as well and hopefully I can play a lot more home and away.”

Despite not featuring for the club in their promotion run-in, his last game coming back in March, there was never any doubt in Shinnie’s mind he wouldn’t be back in Bedfordshire once his contract at St Andrews expired.

When asked if he had looked elsewhere, he continued: “I didn’t really explore that to be honest.

“When I first came on loan, it was spoken about signing after that season anyway, so when the season got done, we started talking about that and got it done quite early, so I didn’t really look into anything else.

“When I met the gaffer when I first came here, we both had the aim to play at a higher level and obviously the manager wanted me last year, but looking ahead to the future as well.

“We’ve achieved what we wanted to achieve last year, so there was no reason for me to leave.”

Shinnie did admit to an element of disappointment at not getting his chance during the final two months, saying: “It was frustrating, but I think after Christmas, things got a bit tougher for us.

“League Two isn’t the most ideal league for the way we wanted to play and the first six months we were on fire, then it got a bit harder and I was frustrated, I won’t lie.

“The games got a little bit tougher, it was a bit harder to play the way we wanted to, the manager had to do what he did and we managed to get over the line.

“I do feel I could have contributed even though I wasn’t getting the chance to, so it was a frustrating time.

“But the boys were doing well and the lads came back into the team, lads like Pelly (Mpanzu), who hadn’t had much of a game, took their chance.

“No-one really sulks around the place, the boys who came in, Elliot (Lee) as well, did really well, it’s a team effort as I said and next year will be the same.

“The gaffer obviously freshened things up, those boys came in and took their chance, that’s football really,

“We’ve got a great squad, a lot of good players, that’s the thing, people chop and change and we’ve got the luxury to do that.”