Boston United have formally completed the signing of Bees midfielder Stewart Talbot.
Stewart, 32, joined the Bees from Rotherham United in February 2004, and played a big part in 'The Great Escape' of that season. He played a total of 64 games for the Bees, scoring 4 goals.
On Tuesday morning he gave brentfordfc.co.uk this exclusive interview -
Good Morning Stewart, so has the move to Boston been completed now?
ST: It was completed yesterday (Monday) afternoon, after talks with the Chairman and Manager.
You chose Boston United, but as I understand there were a lot of clubs fighting for your signature?
ST: Yeah, around ten clubs made approaches, which was extremely flattering, it's great to be thought so highly of. I chose Boston because they showed me how much they wanted me by offering me a three year deal. That shows real commitment on their part, and I intend to show them the same commitment on the pitch. They also have excellent training facilities, and great plans for a new stadium.
And I presume that the location suits you from a family perspective?
ST: It was important to me to get some stability, on and off the pitch. The location is better for my wife as she can be closer to her family. We've actually been living in Windsor for the last year or so, but my little'un is about to start school, and it was important to us to start him in a school where he could remain settled.
When you joined Brentford in February 2004, they were in serious relegation trouble... however you weighed in with a couple of important goals...
ST: We were in serious trouble, and to be honest it looked like we were going down until Martin arrived. I'm not exactly renowned for my my goalscoring exploits but managed to grab a couple of goals along the way. The way that Martin changed things was incredible. I'm very grateful that he gave me my place in the team, and a chance to fight against relegation. It was a tremendous achievement to avoid the drop.
You also scored an important goal against Hinckley United last season...
ST: Someone told me after the match that that goal won them a few quid! Seriously though, it was a vital match to win...the cup run was so important financially, and we had some great moments along the way, but I think in the end you could say that it took it's toll on the players. The game is getting quicker, and more athletic - it's hard and those extra 9 games made things even harder - I think we really deserved to be in the play-offs, particularly having had to play so many matches.
Any other personal highlights last season?
ST: The Wrexham away game. We'd just lost a few in a row, including the match at Luton where we were winning until the end, we found ourselves one nil down and under the cosh. The way that we grabbed the bull by the horns and turned things around was brilliant - we could have fallen to pieces, but we ended up winning and booking ourselves into the play-offs. It was a great feeling at the end.
Who will you miss at Brentford?
ST: I get on really well with Scott Fitzgerald (senior). We joined the club at a similar time, we're two older pros, always talking about football! To be honest there is not one bad egg in the whole squad, they are all good lads. The young lads are so professional, nothing like me when I was younger! I'll miss playing with the youngsters like Michael Turner and Jay Tabb. Michael has the most amazing potential - for him and Sam (Sodje) to come in for their first full season and play that many games at that standard is incredible. Jay also has massive potential, so there is a lot of hope for the fans next season.
Many thanks for talking to us Stewart. Do you have one final message for the fans?
ST: I'd firstly like to thank Martin Allen. When we first met I wasn't sure we'd get on to be honest, but we did, and I couldn't have more respect for him. He has a great style of management, and I'm so grateful that he made me captain last season, I consider it a great honour. I'd also like to thank the players, they've all been brilliant to work with. I've met loads of Brentford fans, be it in the high street, or at matches and they've always been fantastic to me. I'd like to thank them for that, and I'd also like to ask them to get behind the team again next season. It's a tough division, that's for sure, some really hard teams in there, but your vocal support really makes a difference out there on the pitch, so make sure you get behind the lads!