HARTLEPOOL United midfielder Simon Walton has already experienced life in League Two – and admits he does not want to hang around in the bottom tier.
The 25-year-old’s final season at former club Plymouth Argyle was spent battling against relegation to the Conference.
Walton and co were successful in that fight but it was a campaign of uncertainty at Home Park, both on and off the pitch.
The Yorkshireman, having helped the club to safety, eventually signed for Pools on a free transfer 12 months ago.
But, again, Walton found himself embroiled in a struggle at the wrong end of the table and will now start next season back on the bottom rung of the English football ladder.
League Two, though, is not a domain he is hoping to populate for too long.
“I don’t want to hang around in League Two,” he declared.
“I have been there and it’s not a nice place to be.
“It’s the bottom league and I want to be higher than that.
“With respect, we would rather be going to Wolves than Accrington.
“So we can’t lie down, we need to fight to get out of this division.
“It won’t be pretty at times, I know that, but we’ve got to stick together and battle our way out of the division.
“Promotion has to be our aim.”
Walton, though, is looking forward to the start of the season.
“I’ve said that it’s not a nice place to be having been there with Plymouth,” he went on, “But it will be a chance for us to prove something to the supporters and to ourselves.
“Last year wasn’t good enough and we’ve got to make amends for that, on a personal level and as a team.
“We know we are better and capable of more than what we showed, we’re honest about that.
“So next season we’ve got the chance to prove that and that’s exactly what we’ve got to do, right from the off.”