Darius Charles says he’s looking forward to linking up with his new team-mates when the Chairboys begin pre-season training at the end of next week.
The defender penned a one-year deal with the club last week after successfully passing a medical examination at club partners BMI The Chiltern Hospital, and says he feels Wanderers can begin planning with confidence for their first season back in League 1.
“I’m excited to meet the boys and bond into the squad,” he said in his first iFollow interview after signing. “Change can be a bit daunting but also exciting, so it’ll be good for me to get back into the routine, get some fresh air into my lungs at training and get back to my best.
“Going up a league, there are new challenges and teams are better in certain aspects, but clubs coming up can be dangerous when they keep the squad together and make a few additions. I think people could be surprised at what Wycombe can achieve this season,” he added.
Charles is no stranger to the Blues’ management duo of Gareth Ainsworth and Richard Dobson, who are long-time admirers of the former AFC Wimbledon man, who worked under Dobson in Brentford’s youth setup at the beginning of his career.
Throughout his time in the game, the 30-year-old has featured at centre-back, left-back and even up front as an emergency striker, but he didn’t hesitate when asked for his preferred position.
“I’ve known Gareth and particularly Richard for a long time and I’ve always admired the work they’ve done here, so it was an easy decision for me to sign here.
“I’m definitely a centre-half; that’s where I enjoy playing,” he said. “These days, footballers have to be versatile and I’m sure my versatility could come in useful during the season.”
And being a centre-half means Charles will come up against a former team-mate in training each day as he links up again with Adebayo Akinfenwa, two years after the pair helped Wimbledon achieve promotion from League Two via the play-offs.
“I’ll be staying away from him in training!” he joked. “It’s really exciting for me to be back with B – I know what a phenomenal player he is from when I played with him, and he’s only gone and got better.”