Jubril Okedina sat down with local media on Thursday morning to discuss life at United, as well as looking ahead to Saturday's Abbey clash...
On his breakthrough into the U’s starting XI…
“It was tough to get into the side at the start of the season; it was more of a learning curve, but Lloyd and Greg picking up injuries gave me the opportunity to get into the side and I feel like I’ve taken my chance and I’ve not really looked back since.”
On making the move to United in the summer…
“I already knew the gaffer, players and playing style, so it was easy for me to settle in as I already knew what was required of me.
“It was a big decision leaving Tottenham, having been there so long but really it was a no brainer after spending half of last season on loan here and being successful, and I already knew everyone here.
“Another big reason for me signing here was so that I could enjoy and learn from that first team football experience, and it’s really paid off having experienced the likes of Newcastle and Ipswich away last weekend.
“One of the main things you want when moving into a new club is to get as comfortable as soon as possible, and you want to get to know everyone as quickly as you can, so it helped having Shilow [Tracey] here with me too.
“I felt like it was important for me, as I’m getting to that age now where I’m not a youngster anymore and I need to be playing first team football, especially after the promotion with Cambridge last season, and I saw here as the perfect place to do that.”
On working under the boss…
“He’s a top man, he’s welcomed me from day one, he gave me my opportunity and he’s one I can easily talk to, he’s just very good!”
On making the step up to League One and United’s performance this season…
“The step up to League One was a big step, obviously the level of players, stadiums and tactics is better, and it was hard to get comfortable with initially, but I feel like I’m comfortable with it now.
“It’s always easier to adapt when you’ve got experienced defenders around you, like I have had.
“It’s also easier this season having the fans behind your back, it helps you find a level inside yourself that you didn’t think you could reach. To hear the fans cheering the team on feels so much better than playing behind closed doors.
“The buzz from the fans is indescribable really! Even before walking out before fans hearing them chant sets you up for the game, they really are the 12th man for us.
“Some of the boys have been getting on to me trying to get me to score a goal, asking what celebration I’d do! I’ll try to get one before now and the end of the season, but I’m not too bothered if I don’t.
“People said before the start of the season that we were favourites to go down, so with that being said, we’ve overachieved, and I think a lot of people would agree with that.
“We don’t want to rest on our laurels though, we want to keep going and keep pushing, picking up as many points as we can before the end of the season.”
On his versatility…
“I want to stay as versatile as I can possibly be, this season I’ve played in numerous positions, whether that be on either side at centre back or at right back.
“Jack [Iredale] has played all over the pitch, even at left wing on Tuesday, it’s quite funny!”
“It will be an interesting game, we beat them 2-0 away last time as we played well, so we’re hoping we can do the same again on Saturday.”