Keeper Shea can’t wait to take on the Championship challenge

James Shea celebrates winning League One with Jack Stacey
James Shea celebrates winning League One with Jack Stacey

Goalkeeper James Shea is determined to add a few more chapters to his career after winning promotion to the Championship with Luton.

The 27-year-old has seen plenty during his nine years in the game as, after being released by Premier League giants Arsenal in 2013, he had to work his way back up the footballing period via Harrow Borough and AFC Wimbledon.

He joined Town two summers ago and after initially playing second fiddle to Marek Stech, claimed the number one jersey towards the back end of his first season, keeping it for the majority of the campaign just gone, with Luton winning the League One title.

Shea said: “I was in the Ryman Prem, it’s a great journey, one I wouldn’t change for the world.

"I’ve loved every single minute of it and I hope I’ve got a few more chapters in my book left, so I just can’t wait.

“I’m glad we got over the line, we can relax now, but I can’t wait for next season and I’m not the only one.

“Every lad in there can’t wait for next season, to be part of a Championship side.

“We’re just going to go out there, do our best, I’m sure the new manager (Graeme Jones) is going to take us to the next level and I’m sure it will just be fine next year.”

Although Shea expects the new boss to make some additions over the summer, he doesn’t anticipate sweeping changes are needed for a team who has won back-to-back promotions.

He continued: “You’d be stupid just to break the whole squad up when we’ve been champions.

“Of course the manager’s going to want to bring a few players in, add that bit more to the squad, and I don’t blame him.

“But you look at the squad now and you don’t need to make wholesale changes, the boys deserve it as well, so we’ll see what happens.”

Meanwhile, on the chance to work under Jones, who has been assistant boss at Everton, Wigan, Swansea, West Bromwich Albion and also Belgium, Shea added: “World Cups, the lot, it’s amazing to see the manager come in.

“What he’s achieved in the game is unbelievable and the board have done unbelievable to get him here.

“I’m sure he had other clubs looking at him as well, it’s going to be a great season next year, there’ll be highs and lows yet again, but everyone can’t wait for it just to start again.”