Nicky Featherstone is happy to have put pen to paper at Hartlepool United and be a major player in Craig Hignett’s plans.
The 27-year-old is the latest to sign a new contract following on from Trevor Carson, Adam Bartlett, Lewis Hawkins and Josh Nearney.
Featherstone is looking forward to his third season at Victoria Park and had no thoughts of going elsewhere.
“It’s nice to have it sorted out early,” he told SportMail. “It’s good to be in the gaffer’s plans and now I can go and enjoy the summer and be able to concentrate on next season.”
Featherstone has been in outstanding form in the midfield this season, especially in the Hignett era.
The former Hereford and Walsall player admits there was interest in him from other clubs but says there were no itchy feet.
I’m very excited and happy under the current regime.Nicky Featherstone
“It’s probably the longest spell I’ve had at a club, I’ve had two seasons and the next will be my third,” he said.
“I’m very excited and happy under the current regime.
“I’ve really enjoyed playing for the gaffer and Flem (Curtis Fleming) and I think my form has picked up in that period.
“It’s exciting now for me and the lads that they want to push on.
“It’s been a struggle for the last couple of years here and a bit before then too.
“But the gaffer and Flem have brought a new style and positivity and everyone is enjoying it.”
Featherstone was left out by Hignett in his second match in charge, but since being recalled at Luton, he has been flawless in the middle of the park.
The former Hull City product was instrumental in the seven-match unbeaten run which transformed the season.
“The style brought in by the gaffer suits us as individuals and as a team,” he explained.
“I think the way we play is how I want to play the game.
“The gaffer has implemented a shape which has been good for the team but he has also given us the belief and freedom to go out and play.
“Whether we are paying against the top or bottom teams we have the confidence we can go out and get a result.”
Featherstone will be in the side for Saturday’s trip to promotion hopefuls Plymouth Argyle.
But there is a final ‘home’ fixture first for him and his team-mates.
Pools stage an awards night at the Grand Hotel where the Player of the Year trophies and Michael Maidens Goal of the Season will be announced.
It is the first ceremony since 2014 when teenagers Luke James and Brad Walker carried off the principal trophies.
“It’s good for the club to be putting something on like this,” said Featherstone. “The lads are looking forward to it.”