New signing Johnny Hunt has praised the influence of former Stags' midfielder and current academy coach Jamie McGuire in his decision to sign for the club.
The former Chester man became manager Steve Evans’ tenth signing of the summer when he put pen-to-paper on a deal at One Call Stadium yesterday.
And Hunt, 26, has revealed a phone call with former midfielder McGuire encouraged him even further to join the Stags.
“I spoke to Jamie McGuire on the phone [on Monday] night and he had nothing but good words to say [about the club]," Hunt said.
"He said I’d love it here and I just had to take that, I didn’t really need to speak to anyone else.
“He’s been here the last couple of years and he said what way the club’s going and that was good to hear from him and I couldn't wait to get here and sign.”
Although he has previous experience of League Two with Cambridge United, Hunt is relishing the opportunity to play in League Two again after four years in the National League.
“Obviously I’m stepping up and it’s a challenge again and it’s one I’m looking forward to. League Two, with the squad the gaffer’s putting together here, it’s one that this club wants to get out of and it’ll be good to be fighting at the top end.
“I want to be part of a team and a squad that’s looking to win things and get promoted and as soon as you speak to people around the place, that’s all they want to do. They want to get out of League Two and I’m looking forward to being part of that.
“I’ll work hard now and I’ll be ready to be part of a squad and fight for my place in the team and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Our newest signing is cousins with Paul, Stephen, Liam and Callum Smith – all professional boxers – and Hunt believes the competition between the relatives helps to keep him focussed.
“I come from a strong family and they’re the ones that make me want to work hard. My cousins, four boxers, and my younger brother who plays as well, we’re all very competitive and they push me on and I look to support them as well.
“They never let me take my foot off the gas. There’s no shortcuts with them around, that’s every day as well, I’m close to them so it’s a good thing and it only helps me.”
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