Peterborough United’s ambition ensured highly-rated centre-back Ryan Tafazolli signed for the club today (June 6).
The 24 year-old signed a three-year contract at the ABAX Stadium after making over 100 first-team appearances in four seasons at Mansfield Town.
Tafazolli’s form at the League Two club - he won all the fans’ player-of-the-year prizes last season - meant interest from clubs at Championship level as well as League One level was inevitable.
But Tafazolli chose Posh, soon after meeting new first-team manager Grant McCann.
“The club’s ambition matched mine,” Tafazolli stated, “I wanted to play above League Two level, I wanted to play for a manager who wanted me, I wanted to join a club where I will probably play and I wanted to play for a club pushing for promotion.
“The manager sold the club to me in that way. He seems like a good guy. I liked his philosophy. The club ticked all the boxes for me so it became a no-brainer of a decision, but ambition was the key. Promotion has to be the aim and I’m sure we’ll get it. Everything I look for in a club is here.
“It you want an easy analogy, football is like snakes and ladders with ups and downs. I believe this will be a perfect stepping stone for me.
“I’m already excited about the season ahead. I will make sure I come back in great shape ready to impress in pre-season.”
Tafazolli is a third new defensive signing this summer. Posh have also brought full-backs Hayden White and Andrew Hughes to the club.
But Tafazolli also believes he will be an attacking threat.
“I scored six goals for Mansfield last season and I’ll be aiming for 10 goals next season.
“I do pride myself on clean sheets though. That’s the main part of my job. I’m 6ft 5ins and in good physical shape, but I also like to play football in the right way.”
McCann is naturally thrilled to land his man.
He said: “Ryan is a super player. He has won a lot of awards for his performances at Mansfield both this season and last and he will be a threat in both boxes. He is an excellent defender, but I feel we don’t attack the ball from set-pieces well enough and he will certainly improve that.
“He is a left-footer, which provides a bit of balance to the back-line and I know that there was a lot of interest in him. There were two Championship sides in for him this week, but his commitment has not been in question because he didn’t even go and speak to them because he wanted to sign for Peterborough.”