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Jobi McAnuff excited and ready for new challenge in the National League with Leyton Orient

PUBLISHED: 12:00 18 August 2017

Jobi McAnuff of Leyton Orient (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Jobi McAnuff of Leyton Orient (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Jamaican has called time on his international career and is aiming to achieve success at Brisbane Road

Billericay Town's Jermaine Pennant tangles with Leyton Orient winger Jobi McAnuff (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo). Billericay Town's Jermaine Pennant tangles with Leyton Orient winger Jobi McAnuff (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

Jobi McAnuff has achieved a lot in his career and yet prior to this season the Leyton Orient winger had never played in the National League, but he is now and he is up for the challenge.

The 35-year-old is excited about the prospect of trying to achieve success in the top flight of non-league football and keen to help O’s get back to where they belong.

“It will be a challenge and that is something I have always had in my career and that has always kept me going the desire to want to prove something and achieve,” said McAnuff.

“If you get into the safe zone and comfort zone then you can fizzle out a little bit, but we know we have a big challenge this year.

“We are a massive club in this league and you only have to look around our stadium and that will be an incentive for a lot of clubs playing on a surface like this and at a ground like this.

“Hopefully that experience and knowhow will be passed on and it is an experience I am looking forward to.”

Orient have not made the strongest of starts to the new campaign, but have six points from their opening four games.

The manner of Tuesday’s 6-1 loss at Bromley was bitterly disappointing, although O’s will be desperate not to let that happen again.

And after a busy summer of transfer business, patience is required with Steve Davis’ new-look squad.

But the target for the players is clear, McAnuff added: “I would definitely want another promotion on my CV and that is the aim.

“Given what has happened you would assume stability would be the main thing for the club in the immediate future, but we are looking at what we want to achieve this year.

“I think with what we have got and the recruitment we have done, as a group of players we feel we should be at the top-end of the table and fighting for promotion, especially with the top seven being in the mix this year.

“It will just be a case of how quick we gel because a lot of lads have never played together before, but when you look at the squad on paper we certainly back ourselves.

“And that is not just because of how good people are individually, but because we have recruited real characters and we have a lot of leaders now.”

McAnuff may be 35, but he hasn’t showed many signs that age is catching up with him, especially after his man-of-the-match display against Solihull Moors recently.

What will help the Jamaican and Orient is the fact the winger won’t be making many trips to the Caribbean any time soon.

The former Reading captain has called time on his international career and is focused purely on club football now.

It means when Jamaica take on Trinidad & Tobago late next week, McAnuff will be thinking about Eastleigh at home and not the Reggae Boyz too much.

He said: “I am done with that now and at my age it is difficult when you play in the lower leagues because you don’t have the international breaks.

“I was very much part of that group for a number of years, so when you are getting called-up and missing games for your club it is not ideal.

“Fans want you to be available and if it was a matter of going off and playing friendlies then that is understandable, but if it World Cup qualifier or in tournaments it is a slightly different story.

“In terms of that side of things, it is a road that has ended and I can now focus 100 per of my time on Leyton Orient.”

McAnuff can be proud of what he achieved on the international stage and will now look to enjoy more success with O’s in the latter part of his career.

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