New signing Andre Gray excited by being part of the long-term project at Griffin Park.
Andre Gray said that as soon as he saw the long-term ambitions of Brentford and manager Mark Warburton he knew it was the only place he wanted to play.
The 23-year-old striker signed a three-year deal on Friday, moving from newly promoted Sky Bet League Two side Luton Town to Brentford for an undisclosed fee.
Andre was the top scorer in the Skrill Premier last year as his 30 goals helped to return Luton to the Football League after a five year absence.
The Wolverhampton born striker said that he enjoys being part of long-term projects at the clubs he plays for.
Having helped get Luton back into the Football League, Andre was excited by the ambition of Brentford, both on and off the pitch, and is looking forward to his next project at Griffin Park.
“The fact that the manager wanted me was a big part in selling me on Brentford,” said Andre.
“They had a vision of how they wanted me to play and also they have a vision for this club.
“It is a very ambitious club and it was quite an easy decision to make.
“I sat down with my dad and we spoke at length about the options that we had and decided that Brentford was by far the best place for me to come at this stage of my career.
“Seeing ambition off the pitch is massive because as a footballer you want to be part of a project.
“It was the same when I went to Luton because that was a big project after the troubles they had and the fact they had been relegated to the conference.
“It was a big project for them to get promoted given how big a club they were at that level.
“We missed out in my first and second season there but we got it done last season and it was a great season.
“I enjoy going somewhere where there is a project rather than just being somewhere for stability and for the sake of being there.
“Brentford want to go to the top and I want to do that with them.”
Andre spent just over two seasons with Luton Town scoring 52 goals in 97 league appearances.
He started his career at Shrewsbury Town but began to make his name at Conference North side Hinckley United.
Andre scored 29 goals in 66 games for Hinckley before joining Luton on loan in March 2012, a move made permanent that summer.
After scoring 30 goals for Luton last season Andre said he felt the time was right to step up to the Football League and he believes Brentford is the right club to make that move with.
“I am buzzing to have joined the club,” said Andre.
“It has been quite a quick process since I knew Brentford were interested.
“I have been up and down the last few days getting it all sorted and doing my medical.
“I am glad to have it all sorted.
“It was about a week ago that I found out Brentford were interested in me.
“My agent phoned me and said they were interested.
“I am from Wolverhampton so I was following Wolves and I saw how well Brentford did last season.
“As soon as Brentford came along I knew it was a good opportunity for me.
“I spoke to Luton the other day and they asked me my feelings on the move and I said that I wanted to strike now while the iron was hot.
“I had a good season, it was the best season I have had since I started playing football, so I am coming here confident.
“I felt now was the right time to do it and I jumped at the chance.”
“It has been a good summer and I have had a good break.
“I have been on my holidays but I am ready to come back to work now and try myself at a bigger club.
“I want to try myself in The Championship and prove myself.”
This will be Andre’s first taste of Football League football and while he is aware it will be a big test he is confident that it is a test he can pass.
Andre knows that there are areas of his game that he will have to work on if he wants to be a success but he said he is more than willing to put the hours in on the training ground to make the step up.
With 95 career goals in 206 appearances Andre arrives at Brentford with confidence in his own ability but he knows that he will have to work hard to make the most of his chance.
“Football league football will be tough,” said Andre.
“I have a lot to learn still.
“I have grown over the years and I feel I have got better every year but this is a massive step for me.
“If there was any time to do it then it was now and I am ready to put the work in, graft and get in the team and help the team.
“I know I can score goals and I know that I am a threat but at the same time I need to work harder because I have a lot to learn and a lot to improve on.
“I have come here to be coached and to get better.
“I want to do the extra training and do everything to improve myself and be the best that I can be.
“I like to get in behind the defence.
“I am all about pace and speed.
“I like to play off the shoulder and hopefully I can help the team out.”
Andre believes that playing at Luton has prepared him for the pressure of playing in front of big, passionate fans in the Football League.
The Hatters average home attendance last year was over 7,300 and with the expectation to win every game Andre believes it was a good learning curve to deal with the pressure of Championship football.
“In the Conference we were going from home games of eight to ten thousand and going to away games with three or four hundred,” said Andre.
“There is a huge difference but there is also a lot of pressure because everyone expects us to do the business every game.
“Players wanted to do well against us because they weren’t used to playing in front of those crowds.
“I am used to pressure.
“When I first went there from Hinckley I went from playing in front of 200 people to four days later playing in front of 10,000.
“I am fine with the pressure and hopefully I can deliver here.”
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