JOSH Simpson’s arrival at Argyle once again sees a summer signing reuniting with an old acquaintance.
The 28-year old midfielder signed a one-year contract with the Pilgrims, bringing a successful end to a deal orchestrated by the Greens’ new assistant manager, Craig Brewster, who coached Simpson during their time at Crawley Town.
“I got in contact with Craig Brewster a few weeks ago,” said Josh, “I was actually on holiday in Devon with the family, and it’s just gone on from there, really. Talks have been ongoing and we managed to get it tied up today.
“I was with ‘Bruce’ a few years ago when he was at Crawley. He was caretaker manager when we got promoted from League 2 to League 1 and we’ve kept in contact since.”
The central midfielder, who has a penchant for pushing on and getting into attacking positions, has plied his trade at many different levels of football. After impressing at local clubs Cambridge City and Histon, Josh earned a move to the Championship and then settled at Crawley, earning successive promotions and the club captaincy over four seasons.
“I was originally with Peterborough United and we got relegated from the Championship, along with Plymouth,” said Simpson. “The manager at the time had a clear-out and he wanted me to seek another club, so I ended up opting for Crawley.
“They were in the Conference at the time, which was a bit of a backwards step, but it was probably one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. We had consecutive promotions and it’s gone on from there.
“I managed to get the armband and it was an honour leading the team out every week. I was the longest-serving player there and it was a good few years, but I’m looking forward to my next move here at Plymouth. I’m hoping to get promotion again from League 2 to League 1.”
By hook or by crook, the playmaker avoided the dreaded first day of pre-season under new manager Derek Adams, but Josh is ready to get up to speed and catch up to his new teammates.
“I’ve met a few of the lads already," said Josh, "and they said it was a tough day and they’ll be sleeping well tonight!”
“I managed to miss out on today, but I’m sure there’ll be many days where I’m hurting. That’s what pre-season is about – it’s about conditioning yourself for the first game of the season.”
Josh’s progress was hindered last season by a hamstring injury, limiting his playing time, but the Essex boy is confident the ailment is behind him, and is keen to embed himself into a football club he already admires greatly.
“I had tendinitis in my hamstring so I was out for a while,” said Simpson. “I’ve not really had a season like it – I’ve usually played a minimum of 40 games every year – so last year was a bit of a write-off.
“I managed to get through it and play the last three games, and now I’m looking forward to making amends and putting things right with Plymouth.
“The two times that I have played here [Home Park], it’s been a great atmosphere. There’s always been a good attendance here. I had a look the other day and I think we get 700 or 800 away fans every week, on average, which is incredible support.
“It’s a massive club, and I know they’ve got big ambitions to get promoted, back in the Championship and even on from there.
“If I can help in any way, so be it, so I’m looking forward to cracking on.”