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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

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O’Hanlon determined to earn longer deal at Carlisle United

Sean O’Hanlon has revealed he wants to extend his stay at Carlisle United after revealing the debt of gratitude he owes the club for bringing him out of the football wilderness.

O’Hanlon, who will bid to continue an unbeaten start to his United career against Stevenage tomorrow, described Carlisle as “the perfect club for me”.

The no-nonsense centre-half has contributed to two clean sheets and seven points from his three games at the heart of Greg Abbott’s back four.

His immediate impact since joining last month on a deal until the end of the season has led many supporters to call on United to offer the 30-year-old longer terms.

O’Hanlon said: “Considering where I came from, going for a few months without a club, to where I am now, I can’t thank the manager enough for taking a chance on me and bringing me in. The main thing at the moment is I’m looking to establish myself, get as many games under my belt as I can.

“I’m happy here, I’ve been able to slot straight in and it’s handy because I can still live in Edinburgh with my family. It’s the perfect club for me at the moment.”

Asked if he could see himself staying at Carlisle beyond the summer, the Scouser added: “I would like to, yes. But that’s down to the manager. It’s not my decision.”

O’Hanlon’s impressive centre-half partnership with Danny Livesey has helped United to vital wins against Coventry and Tranmere, and the Blues can extend their unbeaten home run to five matches against Boro tomorrow.

The former MK Dons defender, who was training on his own for several months after leaving Hibs last August, believes United are now on the up after going through some hard times in the weeks before his arrival.

And he pledged to supporters that they have not yet seen the best of him, despite his encouraging start in a blue shirt.

“Obviously results have been brilliant and the clean-sheets are great on a personal level,” he said. “Personally I believe there is more to come from me, but the transition has been good and I was fortunate when I arrived that there were a couple of injuries, so I got straight into the team. I have just tried my best, tried to organise the team, get clean-sheets, stop conceding.”

Liverpool-born O’Hanlon says he took extra pleasure from the victory at Prenton Park, and says tomorrow’s clash with Gary Smith’s side can help Abbott’s men take another big step towards a strong finish to the campaign.

“I’m an Everton fan so I never really liked Tranmere,” said the defender, who has already attracted a sponsor at United – Paul Nicholson and Alfie Teasdale. “My mum, dad and sister were there so it was nice to play in front of them and do well.

“It’s great to have that feeling back of knowing you’ve got three points. I love getting home on a Saturday evening, getting the league table out and staring at it.

“Now, looking at the next few fixtures, I genuinely believe we can win these games and keep this run going. If we can beat Stevenage we are closing right in, and then Scunthorpe next Tuesday is a winnable game.

“These two games are important if we want to start catching people above us.”

JColman@cngroup.co.uk

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