Michael Raynes is heading into his first Sky Bet League 2 season as a Carlisle United player full of optimism.The central defender arrived at Brunton Park earlier in the summer following his release from Mansfield Town, and is pleased with the start he has made since joining up with his new team-mates in Cumbria.
"My first few weeks here have been outstanding and I have to thank the lads for that," Raynes told the club’s official website.
"We couldn't have asked for a more welcoming group and all of the new lads have said the same. The atmosphere has been great since we arrived and it's made settling in a lot easier.”
The Cumbrians spent much of last season in the lower places in the division, eventually finishing in 20th spot – nine points clear of the relegation zone. This year, however, the 27-year-old sees no reason why his new side can’t compete at the top end of the table.
“I think this stage of the season is when it gets really exciting,” Raynes added.
"Everyone is optimistic and we're all looking forward to getting going. Someone has to have a good season so we're going into it full of hope.
"We've got a very good, competitive squad and to be successful you need everyone to be pushing each other. If everyone gels well you never know what can happen.”