Josh Simpson: Crawley stay down to Richie Barker influence

Josh Simpson

Crawley captain Josh Simpson claims manager Richie Barker was the biggest factor in his decision to sign a new two-year deal with the League One club.

The 26-year-old midfielder, who joined from Peterborough in January 2011, hit six goals in 42 games this season.

"I have had two fantastic years here and it's rare you have a manager you love playing for," he told BBC Sussex.

"I had a few other options, but Richie was the key to me staying here - I saw no reason to leave."

He continued: "I was honoured to be made captain this year. It really gives you an extra spring and I'd love to keep the armband.

"We've got a really good young team and hopefully we can take a lot of experience into next season.

"I think we suffered from a bit of naivety at times this year but after a great first season in League One, I think we can be pushing for promotion."

Crawley manager Richie Barker told the club website that keeping Simpson at the Broadfield Stadium was great news.

"We really wanted to keep Josh as he is an integral part of what we are trying to achieve going forward, so I am delighted to have secured his services for the next two years," he added.