Date: 13th June 2007 at 10:47am
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Derek Soutar is convinced he`s the man for the Pittodrie Number 1 shirt as he intends to make full use of Jamie Langfield`s bad boy antics which have handed him his chance.

Calderwood has stated that Soutar will be between the sticks next season with Langfield relegated to the reserves and the opportunity couldn`t have come at a better time for the 28 year old former Dundee ‘keeper.

I only have a year left on my contract at Aberdeen so things weren’t looking good.

But everything has changed now. This will be an even bigger season for me because my future depends on it.

Things weren’t looking too clever but all of a sudden it looks like I’ll start the season as No. 1.’

oapy played only one game last season, the ill-fated cup loss to Queens Park and although he played well, the humiliating defeat cast a dark shadow on the eleven players who started.

But he`s got another surprise opportunity and intends to make Langfield`s loss his gain,

This is definitely the chance I have been waiting for and I won’t waste it.

I’ve missed a lot of football through injury and whatever happened it was going to be a big year for me.

I am trying to get another contract but this is just the chance I needed.

I had injury problems at Dundee too where Jamie moved in front of me and he’s done really well at Aberdeen so I’ve had to be very patient.

But now I have my chance to prove to the gaffer that I can play and deserve a new deal.’

erek stresses that he didn`t want to be handed his big moment ahead of his pal in the manner in which he has but he understands why Calderwood has had to take such a hard line with Clangers.

he new Aberdeen first choice ‘keeper said, ‘I’m gutted for Jamie and it could have been in better circumstances. I would have liked to have got the No. 1 spot on merit.

I still don’t know the ins and outs of what happened over in Majorca but we all know that something did happen.

The gaffer has been left with no other option than to lay down the law and it’s important he sets an example to the rest of the players.’

ut despite Langfield being banished, Soutar still does not think he`ll make life easy for him to hold onto the shirt.

Jamie has another year left on his contract and if he does stay at the club I know he’ll give 100 per cent in training and reserve games.

I fully expect him to bounce back from this.

I’m sure he’ll be hurting for a few days but he will get himself together and pick himself up again and maybe even stay at the club beyond next season.

If the tables are turned this year and I continue to start then he will be pushing to get back in the team.

I know he’s not the sort of boy to sulk on the sidelines and see out his contract. He’ll be giving his all in a bid to get back where he was.

That can only benefit the pair of us next season. If Jamie is still at the club I know he will push me hard at training.

I worked with Jamie last year in training and I pushed him hard. It worked well.’

hilst the management have publicly put their faith in Soutar, the rumours persist that a new face will be brought in. The current hottest story is Manchester City`s Kasper Schmeichel but Soutar is up for any challenge after finally being given his chance.

Nothing fazes me at all and I don’t feel any pressure in the slightest.

I am not one of those people who worries and lets things get to them. I do what I do because I love doing it.

I know I am capable of doing a job for Aberdeen. I love playing football and it is an added bonus that I’m getting paid for doing the job I love.

Pressure doesn’t really come into it. I know the club have some massive games to look forward to next season but you thrive on that as a player.

I’m not taking anything for granted. I know I’ll have to prove myself to the manager all over again during pre-season.

I have to show him I’m the right man for the job as we get set for a big campaign.’

he newly promoted ‘keeper got the unexpected news from his gaffer by a simple phone call and so far, that`s all that he`s heard from JC despite the furor surrounding the situation .

‘I spoke to the boss briefly and he gave me the good news.

He told me I still have to work hard during pre-season but I’ve got the toughest season yet ahead of me.

It’s going to be a massive year for me. It is the first time the club have been in Europe for a while and we’ll all be focussed on doing our best.

You want to test yourself at the very top and playing in the UEFA Cup will be the highlight of my career so far.

But I have to prove myself to the manager and the fans if I’m to get the chance to perform at that level.

I have to show them that I am capable of stepping up and doing a job for Aberdeen.

I am enjoying my holidays just now but I can’t wait to get back on the training ground. I’m really looking forward to the pre-season.

If I can have a good pre-season I’ll be No.1 and then it’s up to me to take things from there and hopefully win a new deal.’

So Derek`s in it seems for good.

Happy with that or do you think we still need a new set of hands in the 18 yard box?

Our current poll seems to suggest that he deserves a run out for at least the pre-season matches.

The story rumbles on and on so have your say on the Vital Aberdeen Forum now or make it heard through voting on our poll.