Brighton & Hove Albion loan signing Liam Ridgewell hopes he can bring some added experience to the club's promotion challenge at a vital time.
The 31-year-old former West Brom and Aston Villa defender was part of the Birmingham City side which won promotion from the Championship in 2009, and feels experience was a key factor in the Blues' elevation to the Premier League.
He said, "It's massive in the Championship. It's great having young players, and you need the energy around you, but you do need that experience.
"If I can help in anyway, using the experience I have, that is my aim and hopefully I can help the club towards promotion. That is the club's main aim, and hopefully I can be part of it for the time that I am here.
"You need those experienced heads when things aren't going quite how you want, or if you are not getting the breaks. It can be disheartening, but it's up to us senior pros to help work people through that and make sure we are heading in the right direction.
"For me, that is what I am hoping I can bring, and it's what I have done throughout my career. The senior boys here will be doing that."
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Ridgewell is thankful to both Portland Timbers and the MLS for sanctioning the temporary move to Albion, as it means he will be able to spend extra time with his English-based family - while also keeping fit, in preparation for the new MLS season in March.
He's also delighted to be linking up with Chris Hughton and Colin Calderwood once again, having previously played under the pair at Birmingham.
"Each time I come back, the more time I can get to spend with the family and kids. Being able to keep fit during pre-season back in England, and getting games under my belt is great.
"I spoke to Chris, who I played under at Birmingham, and I had a good time with him there, so now I am just looking forward to getting games.
"Playing for Chris was a big thing. I know him and Colin Calderwood from Birmingham and it is nice to walk in somewhere and find a familiar face. I know what Chris is trying to do here at the club, and it was a good move for me.
"The injuries haven't helped the team. Hopefully I can come in and help with that situation, and the aim is to fill that gap in the short term.
"It's worked out well for me, and now I am just looking forward to getting going. Since stepping in here from day one, everything has been great: the training ground, the set-up, everything the club is doing has been great and it is very nice to be part of that."
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