Ambitious Golcar United new boy Dan Naidole wants a few more promotions on his CV before he retires.
Naidole, 30, insists he hasn’t come to Golcar to just sit in the middle of the division.
“When I signed I told the manager Ash Connor I didn’t want us to be just shuffling around the middle of the league,” he said. “Ash wants us to get promoted and I want it too. I want to win the league, that’s my aim.”
Born in England, Naidole is of Fijian heritage and his grandfather and uncles both played Rugby League.
He said: “My grandad Thomasi moved to England to play Rugby League and my uncles Tom and Joe also played the game. I played it at school but broke my wrist and decided rugby wasn’t for me.”
On his career in football Cowlersley-based Naidole said: “I didn’t start playing until about 12 where I played for Linthwaite. I then moved up to open age football at 16 where I signed for Bay Athletic.
“I made my way up the Bay Athletic teams and when I turned 19 I moved up to semi-pro level and signed for Ossett Albion.
“After my time at Ossett I signed for Brighouse where I had a great time. I won the league there and it was just a great experience.
“I played under a manager called Paul Quinn at Brighouse. I’d played with him at Bay before he stepped up to management. It helped me sign for Brighouse because I knew him and a lot of the lads. The thing that Quinny built was a great dressing room with loads of local lads and the chemistry just worked, a bit like what we now have at Golcar. I scored lots of goals there and enjoyed it.”
After winning the North East Counties League Division One trophy in 2014 with Brighouse, Naidole went from a huge high to a devastating low two years later. Whilst at Huddersfield YMCA Naidole suffered a terrible injury.
On the injury and how he coped with it he said: “I tore my MCL, my cartilage in my knee whilst at Huddersfield YMCA. We were in the second to last game of the season. I had to wear a leg brace for six weeks. I missed the whole of the 2016/17 season, I had to have rehabilitation and everything.
“People probably thought I’d be back for the following season but I wasn’t. That type of injury made me sofa bound for months on end. It wasn’t like I was desperate to just get back to football, I was desperate to get back to normal life.
“It was really depressing. I couldn’t do anything, I couldn’t work, go to the toilet or shower properly, I couldn’t leave my own house because of this brace on my leg. My mum and brother were a great support for me then.”
After recovering from the injury Naidole played for a number of clubs before deciding to move to Golcar this season.
On that decision he said: “Ash kept texting me asking me to come. However I wanted to keep playing at a higher level. Things started to get harder and so eventually I accepted the offer from the club.
“I have sat down with the chairman and Ash and Gav Connor and I love what they are doing. I think they have brought the club on leaps and bounds.”
Having enjoyed his first few months at the club, Naidole believes he could see himself staying at the club for the rest of his career.
“Everyone has a terrific bond in the village. The thing with Golcar is that it is always trying to improve and move forward.
“I do probably see myself staying at Golcar until I call it a day. I like being at the club, it’s a good dressing room and it has some brilliant people involved with it.”