GARRY Thompson knows better than most that anything is possible is football.

Having forged his reputation in Bradford as a member of the history-making City squad under Phil Parkinson, he is now looking to make his own mark with Park Avenue.

His appointment as the new boss at Horsfall Stadium has certainly caused a stir and his previous achievements at Valley Parade will naturally set a high bar.

But that is a challenge that Thompson is excited to be taking on.

“I think pressure is a good thing because it doesn’t allow you to rest on your laurels,” he said.

“This is something completely new but when you’ve had a career as long as mine, you’re going to have pressure.

“I had pressure when I left Morecambe and went to Scunthorpe. Nigel Adkins showed great faith in me to take someone who had only played a season in League Two to a League One club who had just come down from the Championship.

“I’m a really positive guy and all I want is my players to show no fear and go out and express themselves. I want them to enjoy what they are doing.

“I played my best football when I enjoyed it, none more so than at Bradford City. They were a great bunch of lads all pushing in the same direction to achieve the same goal.

“That’s what I want to create at Bradford (Park Avenue). There’s pressure in any walk of life and I like to think I’ve come through the other side of it in my career and I don’t see this being any different.”

Ricky Ravenhill and Ross Hannah were among the first well-wishers after this week’s announcement. The group chat involving the City class of 2012-2013 has been buzzing with talk of a catch-up to celebrate the news.

Thompson’s arrival to succeed Mark Bower has created massive public interest in a club that have not been used to the spotlight.

“I want to put my own stamp on things however long my time will be there,” he added. “I aim to leave the club on a better footing than when I found it.

“They’ve been in the play-offs the last two seasons so there is pressure straight away from that point of view.

“One thing I’ve accumulated over my career is a lot of really good contacts and experienced people who have made the same jump. I’ll be calling on all of them to advise and guide.

“The football fraternity has been extremely kind in extending a hand and that will spur me on.”

Thompson admits he has almost drifted into his management during a career that has spanned more than 700 senior games.

“As you get older, you become a senior role model. In a way you become an extension of the manager.

“None more so than when I was at Wycombe, where the senior pros had three or four players they took under their wing.

“You showed them the ropes and tried to lead by example.

“You told them about situations that had cropped up in your own career and passed that knowledge on. I naturally fell into that category of being a leader.”

Thompson is remembered by City fans for the stunning play-off goal against Burton and his role in the Wembley demolition of Northampton. Can he lead Bradford (Park Avenue) to promotion glory as their player-manager?

“Everybody wants to achieve that next level and I’m hoping to do that. It’s going to be difficult obviously dipping my toe into management for the first time.

“It’s about raising my own standards and the way I do things for the greater good of Bradford (Park Avenue).

“But who would have thought Bradford City would have had a cup run like that and then finish the season by getting promoted after going to Wembley twice?

“The biggest thing from that season was seeing the passion of the fans from the city of Bradford.

“They want a football team who are relatable and an extension of them in terms of professionalism, hard work and a desire to never give up.

“I’ve come from a non-league background myself.

“I played in the Conference until I was 26 and know what it’s about.

“There are no passengers. Everybody has got to work, graft and scrap for every single point.

“The response from everybody around Bradford has been nothing short of spectacular.

“It makes you sit up and realise this is a big opportunity at a proper club.”