Paul Simpson says he is grateful for the “trust” of his bosses at Carlisle United - after being backed to award longer deals to signings.

Simpson brought in Jayden Harris this week on a three-year contract.

The midfielder is set to be in the squad for the first time at Colchester United today (kick-off 3pm).

The Blues have seldom handed out contracts of such length in recent times.

Manager Simpson said the statement from the club is a valuable show of faith.

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“I’m really thankful they’re doing that. They’re trusting me on these things, which is great for me,” he said.

“I’ve just got to make as many right decisions as wrong ones.

“All signings are a gamble. Everything we do is a bit of a gamble. I just have to hope it’s a good gamble, it’s a worthwhile one and we all benefit.

“I think it’s down to hard work now. The harder we all work the luckier we’re going to get. It’s up to Jayden to work hard, get a bit of luck; the same with everybody else who’s in the squad.

“They’ve got to do all they can to be the best professionals to make our club the best it can be.”

United paid an undisclosed fee to Aldershot to secure the signature of box-to-box midfielder Harris, 22.

He could feature in Essex today along with fellow new signing Jack Stretton, while Jamie Devitt should return after missing last weekend’s opener against Crawley with Covid.

Simpson says Harris is ready to be thrown into action immediately if needed.

“Jayden’s had a lot of games over pre-season with Aldershot. He was fit and ready to start the National League season this weekend, so we’ve taken him out of that and brought him here,” the Blues boss said.

“He’s fitted in really well. He came up on Tuesday afternoon, had his medical, we managed to get it all sorted and signed, and I’m looking forward to seeing how he’s going to develop over the next few years.

“We’ve now got a job to make him into the player he threatened to be in Fulham’s academy, and hopefully he can progress further.”

United had been tracking Harris for some time, whilst he also caught the eye when scoring for Aldershot in a recent friendly against the Blues’ first-day opponents Crawley.

“We had somebody there doing the report,” Simpson said. “We’d done a little bit of work on him, then that sort of cemented it, and we thought, ‘Right, we need to try and go and do it’.

“We’ve been discussing it with Aldershot over the last week to ten days. We got to the point this week where we could get him in.

“I just felt we needed a couple of additions to the group.”