Layton Stewart feels joining Preston North End on a permanent basis is the right move for his development.
The 20-year-old signed for the club on Saturday morning from Liverpool for an undisclosed fee, putting pen to paper on a three-year deal at Deepdale.
Having been on the books at Anfield since the age of seven, striker Layton admitted the decision to leave was “very difficult”, but he felt he had to do so for the sake of his career.
Layton said: “I’m delighted to be here. It’s another step in my career, on my journey, so I think it’s the right move in my development to try and get some first team football.
“I’m delighted it’s a permanent because I can get settled in, start to find my feet and I can’t wait to meet the lads and play.
“I need to be with the lads, try and find my feet fast. It’s a big opportunity but it’s a good one for me to develop and obviously I need time, but hopefully I can do what I’ve done over the past few years.”
Layton had a superb season for Liverpool’s youngsters during the 2022/23 Premier League 2 campaign, scoring 11 goals in 17 matches.
His only experience of senior football to date is his professional debut against Derby County which came in the Carabao Cup in 2022, therefore manager Ryan Lowe is aware it may take the forward time to become accustomed to the Championship.
Layton said: “Every striker has confidence and I’ll always back myself to score goals and help the team, so I want to come here and try and do that to the best of my ability.
“I’ve scored at youth level but I’ve got to take it into a first team environment now and try and do it for Preston in the games that I play in.
“I like to run in behind and get in behind defenders. I like to be in the six-yard box and score tap-ins, the nice and easy goals, and I don’t mind having my back to play and holding off [defenders] to bring people into play.
“I want to try and come here to play games, score goals at Championship level and just keep improving myself and getting better each week.
“I think I can do that with Ryan [Lowe] and the group of lads Preston have got.”