SAM Hornby wants another taste of a vocal Valley Parade in the League Two curtain-raiser against Cambridge.

The keeper was wowed by the atmosphere generated by a full house in the Liverpool friendly.

And now he has got his eye on forcing his way into Gary Bowyer’s team plans for the August 3 season opener at home.

Hornby hopes to win his fight with Richard O’Donnell for the starting role after spending last season stuck on the bench for Port Vale.

He has not conceded a goal in his two 45-minute outings in pre-season so far and aims to keep pushing his claims with City boss Bowyer over the next couple of weeks.

Hornby said: “I personally want to be playing. That’s why I’ve come here.

“Hopefully I’ll do enough to get in the team come the first game of the season.

“The manager has said that places are up for grabs and that’s what you want to hear as a player.

“You want to be able to keep working hard and hopefully hit the ground running.”

Having experienced a packed-out Valley Parade for the first time against Liverpool, Hornby insists City must use that army of support to their advantage.

“Teams come here and when you walk out the tunnel and towards the Kop, which is incredibly high, you can be a bit intimidated,” he added. “Hopefully we can use that on our side.

“The ground was at its capacity and if we can come anywhere close to that during the season, and hopefully we do, then it can only be positive.

“You can’t escape the fans. They are in every corner of the ground.

“They come in numbers, voice their opinions and let you know if you are five per cent off it.

“We’ve got to make sure we are always on our game and impress them all the time.”

Stephen Darby came into the City dressing room to talk to the squad ahead of last Sunday’s fundraiser for his MND foundation.

Hornby admitted listening to the former defender should act as further motivation for the new campaign.

He said: “It was emotional when he came in the dressing room, for him and for us.

“It was a lump-in-the-throat moment for a few of the lads because of the way he was speaking.

“He said that as long as you work hard for the fans that’s all they will ask for. Hopefully we can do that for them because they come here in numbers.

“We all know how highly regarded he is at the club. It was great for him to come and thank us for what we’d done and for us to see him.”