ADAM CORBETT revealed it took him all of two seconds to commit his future to Spartans when he was approached about a new deal over the festive period.
The central defender has spent the past four years learning his trade at the Ainslie Park Academy, his patience finally rewarded with a first-team debut in the 1-0 victory at Gala Fairydean Rovers in August.
The 20-year-old, who is in his second year studying for a Mechanical Engineering degree at Heriot-Watt University, has gone from strength to strength since that day in the Borders six months ago and is looking every bit the player that has prompted manager Dougie Samuel to speak so highly of him.
However, with his initial six-month contract ending at the turn of the year, the player himself admitted there was only ever one place he wanted to continue his football development.
“I was absolutely over the moon when the club came to me with a new offer,” said Corbett, who has agreed a deal until summer 2019. “I’ve been at the club for four seasons and had no intention of going elsewhere. I’m really loving my time here so it was a really easy decision.
“My contract was up at the end of last year so it was a case of seeing how I settled in the first half of this season and I think that’s gone well.
“I’ve managed to force my way into the starting line-up and am now holding down a regular place. Every time I go on to the pitch I try to do the best I can. Even when I found myself sitting on the bench in the earlier part of the season, I always want the boys to give it everything they’ve got.
“We’ve got a really strong squad here and everyone is there for each other. Of course it’s all new to me with it being my first year but it’s a really good environment to be in.”
Corbett’s recent form has seen first-team regular Paul Thomson have to make do with a place on the substitutes’ bench, Samuel instead electing to partner Corbett alongside Blair Tolmie in the centre of the rearguard.
“Dougie’s been really happy with my progress this season but there’s still a lot more I can improve on,” Corbett said. “I’ve still got a lot to learn. I want to play at the highest level I possibly can so this season has been a real learning curve.
“But I get along with Paul really well. It’s healthy competition and he’s always the one at training trying to push me and vice versa. Although I’m the one starting at the moment we’ve got that competition that spurs us on and that’s the same throughout the rest of the team.
“It’s been a step up, for sure, the tempo is a lot faster and teams try to play football in this league. I remember my first game against Gala and I was up against Steven Noble, who is really experieneced at this level. I suppose it was good to be thrown in straight at the deep end and I think that’s helped me going forward.”
Spartans welcome Edusport Academy tomorrow in what is another crucial fixture in this season’s title run-in. Samuel’s men remain nine points off leaders East Kilbride but hold four games in hand.
“We’ve lost to Edusport already in a cup game this season down at Galabank so we know they are a decent enough side,” he said. “We’ve trained well this week, though, so we’re looking forward to tomorrow and hopefully picking up all three points.
“We know our destiny is still very much in our own hands so we just need to give it everything we’ve got between now and the end of the season. I think we showed that in last week’s win over Edinburgh Uni, getting the goal in stoppage time, that we’re willing to go that extra mile.”
Meanwhile, Whitehill Welfare make the trip to Islecroft to take on hosts Dalbeattie Star and there is an all-Capital clash at Christie Gillies Park where Civil Service Strollers entertain Edinburgh University.