SAM Hornby is up for the fight of becoming City’s number one next season.

The former Port Vale keeper insists he is not coming to Valley Parade simply for the back-up role.

Hornby spent the last campaign on the Vale bench behind player-of-the-year Scott Brown.

And now he is determined to take the next step and try to force his way into Gary Bowyer’s thinking from the start.

Hornby said: “This is a fresh start in my career and I really want to kick on.

“I just want to come in and play and I made that clear when I met the gaffer.

“I want to really try and move my career forward and hopefully do that by playing games.”

Brown was an ever-present in League Two to limit the 24-year-old’s appearances to the Checkatrade Trophy and reserves.

Hornby added: “I’ve got a lot of respect for Scott and we really worked well together. It was a good learning experience even though the game-time was limited.

“I got the opportunity to play in the Checkatrade Trophy and still had 20-odd reserve games. I managed to play but just not in the league.

“They were games when I really had to concentrate on and keep focused because if Browny had got injured, I’d have had to be ready to step up.

“He was doing very well and obviously managed to see the season through injury-free and his performances were good.

“You can’t really complain when he gets player of the year and sweeps up all the awards.

“It would have been his to lose again if I had stayed at Port Vale next season.

“It was tough but hopefully I can go in there now at Bradford and really stamp my authority on the jersey and get games.”

Hornby admitted he jumped at the chance to join City but already knew about the club from his time alongside Jon McLaughlin at Burton. The Scotland international also put in a good word for him when Bowyer was doing his research.

“I worked under Jon with Burton and he only had positive things to say whenever we were talking about Bradford,” said Hornby.

“When we played Sunderland this year in the FA Cup, I had a chat with him after. I’ve had a good relationship with him working-wise.

“He’s a really good person and I learned a lot off him when I was younger. He’s always had that work ethic and now he’s flying high at Sunderland.”

Hornby hopes he will also be at the right end of the table with his new club as they look to pick themselves up from a wretched campaign.

“Nobody wants to see a club get relegated but it happens. Now we’ve got to bounce back and get performances right on the pitch.

“There will be a lot of expectation but that’s the challenge. I can’t wait to walk out in front of 15,000 fans who are backing us all the way.

“I’m sure the atmosphere will be brilliant and I’m really excited.”