Dons' Harrison not fazed by record signing tag

Your Local Guardian: What pressure: Wimbledon's record signing Byron Harrison What pressure: Wimbledon's record signing Byron Harrison

Byron Harrison will not let the pressure of being AFC Wimbledon's record signing get to him.

The 24-year-old made his debut in Saturday's 2-1 win over Port Vale after joining the Dons from Stevenage last week for a club record fee in excess of the previous best of £25,000 paid for Jon Main.

But while the burden of having that tag attached to you would weigh some players down, former Carshalton Athletic forward Harrison insists he is not bothered by it.

"It is something for me to focus on but the job is the same regardless however much the club pays for me," he said.

"If they had bought me on a free they would expect the same things from me - it is my job to score goals."

Harrison, who grew up in Clapham scored 10 goals in 46 appearances for Stevenage since joining them 12 months ago but found his playing time limited this season, making just 11 starts.

Once he found out Wimbledon were interested in him, he put in a transfer request in search of more first-team football.

"Wimbledon is a club going places," he said.

"With the promotions they have had most people are a fan and have a soft spot for Wimbledon so when Stevenage said they were interested it was a move I wanted to make.

"I think it is important at my age that I play, in terms of helping my development as a player.

"I have aspirations to play higher and you are not going to get anywhere if you are not playing.

"Terry Brown made it clear that he wanted me to come here and when somebody wants you that much it is encouraging and makes you want to make the move.

"That is what did it, Wimbledon were up for it and I wanted to play more football."

Harrison was one of four debutants as goals from Jack Midson and Luke Moore saw Wimbledon record their first League Two win in more than three months at Vale.

Billy Knott, George Moncur and Jason Euell, who was forced off with an ankle injury just before half-time, all started and are expected to be in the starting-line-up for tomorrow's trip to Gillingham.

The victory sparked talk of a play-off push again despite the Dons being 12 points off seventh-place but it is talk that Harrison, who experienced play-off promotion with Stevenage last season, actively promotes.

"I would encourage people to talk about the play-offs," he said.

"Thinking positive is something we did at Stevenage and it worked for us so we will look to do that at AFC Wimbledon.

"We have as good a chance as anyone, we can get far in this league.

"Personally, I do not have individual targets and the only target is to push AFC Wimbledon forward.

"It would be good to get the goals that do push them forward but if the team does well that is the main thing."

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