Robbie: Why I Signed

Robbie Stockdale is hoping to make his move from Middlesbrough to West Ham a permanent one - and hopes that he will just be taking a short sabbatical from the Premiership if he does so.

Right back Robbie, initially signed on a month's loan, says:

"The first I knew about it was a couple of days ago, though whether other people knew about it before I am not sure; I made the drive down today and it all came about very quickly for me, certainly.

"With my situation at Middlesbrough I was getting a little bit stale there - and when a club like West Ham shows an interest it is very flattering - so it was an easy decision to make."

Robbie lost his place to Danny Mills when he joined from Leeds just after the start of the season, and he says:

"Middlesbrough thought that they needed a bit more experience, maybe, and they brought Danny Mills in.

"He is an England international and respected in the Premier League, but I would like to think that I did a good job for Middlesbrough as well; I played a lot of games for them and I was part of a very good back four.

"I was a little bit disappointed that it came to a little bit of a stop there, but I am happy to be here, and I want to do as well as I can.

"I have played over 70 games in the Premier League and that is where I want to be playing, but outside of it I think this is probably the biggest club to join."

He views a potential move to Upton Park as an exciting prospect - even if it does mean leaving his home town club - and regards West Ham as being as big an outfit as Middlesbrough.

"I see them on a par, really; when you look at the ground and the fan base you see that it is a club which has a great tradition of being in the Premier League," he enthuses, "and with the players that they have had, and the players they have still got, I am sure it is in everyone's best interests to get them back in the Premiership as quickly as possible - and hopefully I can help with that."

As for what happens in a month's tie, he adds:

"That is up to the clubs to decide what will happen; I did believe it was going to be three months but then today it was a month, but all I can do is come here and, if I do leave Middlesbrough, this would definitely be my first choice."

Alan Pardew has said here that he regards Robbie as wanting to prove, in the nicest possible way, that he is worthy of first team football, and he agrees:

"I think that probably hits the nail on the head; I think I can do a job in the Premier League for Middlesbrough but obviously that is not going to happen.

"So doing a job here hopefully will lead to a permanent move, which would suit me."

He will have just one training session to get to know his new team mates, and he says:

"I know a couple of the lads through Scotland, Christian and Don Hutchison, so hopefully that will help me settle in.

"I have chatted to Alan a few times on the phone, met him today, and I am very impressed."

As for his Scotland career, he says:

"That was hindered not playing at Middlesbrough, and West Ham is a high profile club, so if I can get to play well here it can only help with Scotland who have some big games, the playoffs with Holland, coming up."

Robbie is almost certain to start at Cardiff, and he adds:

"It certainly looks like it, if selected; it has been a hectic week because I played for the Scotland Future team against Germany in Aberdeen so it has been from one end of the country to the other."

As for whether a Boro boy can adapt to life down south - what, perhaps 30 years ago might have been described as going from The Smog to The Smoke - he concludes:

"That is something to work it out later if and when it happens - but I am going to give it a really good go to try an impress people and make it happen - then, hopefully, it won't be too much of a problem."