Goalkeeper Neil De Jesus believes the competition for the number one shirt has pushed him to work even harder for the FC Málaga City Senior team.
De Jesus, who was formerly part of the U19s set up, has stepped up to senior level and the shot-stopper has claimed the starting spot and is enjoying a run in the side.
The New York-native admitted that the competitiveness in training with the goalkeepers had brought the best out in him as they all keep “pushing each other”.
“It was great to finally see my hard work pay off and get the rewards from that,” the goalkeeper said. “I just have to keep on working. From the beginning, Freddie (Lapworth) and Álvaro (Mata) both kept me on my toes, which was great.
“It’s always a great thing to have competition. It’s something you want as a goalkeeper, especially when we have three ‘keepers, everyone is just keeping one another on point and pushing each other.”
Talking about former #FCMC Academy players progressing into the first team, De Jesus added: “From an academy point of view, you can see that there is a clear pathway for academy players make it up into the first team and get into senior football.”
The #FCMC senior team currently sit top of the league after getting back to winning ways last weekend with a 4-2 victory at home to Atlético de Marbella Balompie.
Adrián Domínguez’s side have picked up 22 points from their 11 games and De Jesus, who is set to mark his 20th birthday with a start against Athlétic Club Fuengirola on Saturday, believes the side responded and are focussed on their objectives.
“It’s good, we had a rough start, but we picked it up after those first two games. Towards the middle, we had some home games, picked our confidence up and got to play our game the we want to.
“It was an unfortunate end to the first half of the season, but we won our first game back and we are good to go now.
“The other teams aren’t important because we need to just focus on ourselves. In the end, if we look around is, we will be our biggest enemy. We just have to keep playing our game and just focus on our results.”
He continued: “It was great. We responded the way we wanted to. We got the win and although we gave up the lead, we bounced back and that’s all we wanted.”