HARTLEPOOL United boss Neale Cooper believes Scott Flinders has the potential to go “big time” – and the keeper himself today revealed his ambition to play in the Premier League.
The 25-year-old has been watched by several top-flight scouts this season, including representatives of West Brom, who look set to lose Birmingham City loanee Ben Foster at the end of the campaign.
Flinders is in the best form of his career, with eight clean sheets in 15 games, finally fulfilling the promise which persuaded Crystal Palace to pay Barnsley £1million for his services in 2006.
The Rotherham-born goalie said: “I don’t want to play League One football all of my career.
“I want to push on and one day make the Premier League – that’s my goal.
“It’s only a short career, so you’ve got to do all you can to make it to the top.
“When you go for the amount of money I did as a kid then you get ambitions to play at the top level.
“But the best thing I did was come down a level to League One because I think I could still have been in the Championship, but that might have been on the bench somewhere.
“This is the best way to get where I want to be and, at the moment, I’m on the road to that.”
Flinders’ last outing was a match-winning shut-out during Saturday’s 1-0 victory at Yeovil.
“I’m 26 in June and I’m at the level where I should be performing consistently week in, week out,” he added.
“I want to get a good, consistent level throughout the season and I’ve been happy with that.
“There was one blip before Christmas and that was tough, but I soon got over it. I’ve definitely improved since this time 12 months ago.”