"I trust in my ability that I'll prove what I can do" - Striker Cosgrave ready for a fresh start with Shaymen

Town striker Aaron Cosgrave says his move to Halifax feels like a fresh start.
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The forward has experienced a stop-start last couple of years following a move to AFC Wimbledon, then in League One.

He has played for four different clubs over the last two seasons, but is hoping for a more settled spell at The Shay.

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"Yeah, definitely," he said. "New city, obviously I'm from down south, Essex, fresh faces, I don't know any of the lads but they've made me feel really welcome.

Aaron CosgraveAaron Cosgrave
Aaron Cosgrave

"It is a fresh start, to come in and show what I can do."

Cosgrave was immediately loaned out to National League side Dover after joining Wimbledon in the summer of 2021, scoring four goals in his first 11 games for a team marooned at the bottom of the table.

He then broke into the Wimbledon first-team in the second-half of the season before disaster struck.

"There was a clear pathway for me, the manager really liked me," Cosgrave said.

"I did well on loan and came back, started some games.

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"But then I got an ankle ligament injury fifteen minutes into a game.

"It's not ideal but that's football, it happens and you just have to try and get on with it.

"Obviously it was disappointing because I did see myself becoming a starter in that team and establishing myself in the league.

"But everything happens for a reason, I'm here now so hopefully I can make my way back up."

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Last season saw Cosgrave loaned out to Southend United, where he failed to score in ten games, and then King's Lynn, where he netted six times in 20 games, before being released by Wimbledon.

"My manager there at the time, Mark Robinson, he really believed in me," Cosgrave said.

"He gave me a lot of confidence, but things didn't work out and we got relegated.

"But I believe I can make it back to that level, that's my aim."

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Cosgrave was at West Ham from the ages of 11 to 14 before going on to do his scholarsip at Colchester United.

After "bouncing around" for a while in non-league, he was signed by Wimbledon after a successful trial.

"I've had stints of playing as the player I want to be," he said.

"But with the game time, playing-wise I haven't been as consistent, so I'm hoping that I can build that consistency here, but it comes with the game time.

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"I think once I'm confident, not to blow my own trumpet, I think I'm quite unplayable.

"But I'm pretty big on the confidence, if I'm not confident then I might not play that great.

"But hopefully here I can build my confidence and get the goals.

"I have complete belief in my abilities, I think I can play as high as I want.

"It's just about me proving it now.

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"I've had some opportunities at clubs but they haven't been consistent, but I know if I get that consistent chance, play regular games, I trust in my ability that I'll prove what I can do and hopefully I can get to the level I think I can."

After flitting from club-to-club, Cosgrave is targeting some stability and the chance to establish himself.

"That's my aim, that's what I want," he said.

"Any striker will tell you, when you're playing, starting, it builds confidence.

"Once you get that first goal, they'll just keep coming.

"As long as the manager trusts you, that's what any striker wants.

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"When you're in and out of the team, not really playing, it's hard to get that goalscoring form.

"You can still be playing well but people don't really look at that, they look at how many goals you've scored.

"Any striker will tell you it's about consistent game time and the trust in the team and the management."

Cosgrave describes himself as quick, a number nine who can get in-behind defences and a striker who can run at defenders.

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"Halifax really sold it for me when I went up to meet the gaffer," he said of his switch to The Shay.

"Just the pathway he showed me, the way we want to play, how I fit into it, what role I can do to help the team.

"He showed me the pathway for a lot of players that have come through and haven't gone backwards, so many players have gone on from Halifax to make a step up, so it seemed like the perfect place for me."

Halifax were among the lowest scorers in the National League last season, which they are hoping the addition of Cosgrave will help to address.

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But the 24-year-old says he is happy for that type of expectation to be placed on his shoulders.

"I don't think any striker would say they don't like that - that's why I'm a striker," he said.

"Strikers want the glory. If we're not scoring, we'll accept the other side, that's part and parcel of the job.

"Hopefully I hit the ground running, that'd be the perfect scenario.

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"If not, I know a lot of people might say 'oh, he's not scoring', but you've just got to believe in your abilities and believe that once you get that first one, they'll start coming in.

"But hopefully I hit the ground running."