Goalkeeper Harry Gibson believes his new Hampstead & Westminster side could be dark horses in the NOW: Pension’s Men’s Hockey League Premier Division – providing all of his players click and quickly.

England U21 Gibson has swapped Loughborough Students for west London this summer – one of 10 new players at the club.

New Zealand international Andy Hayward is the stand out name among the transfers while Michael Johnson comes in as coach.

Hampstead & Westminster finished seventh last season with Beeston successfully defending their title thanks to a penalty shootout victory over East Grinstead on finals day.

And while Gibson admits his switch came about with longer term aims in mind, the 21-year-old believes the team, who open their campaign against Wimbledon on Saturday, could be successful sooner rather than later.

“I’ve been settling in really well, it’s a really good set of lads and a really good environment with a good new coach,” he said.

“I moved because of the amount of potential we had but it’s a longer term thing, looking to the future for the next five years.

“But I don’t see why we can’t challenge the top teams this season if it all comes together. We’ve got a really talented squad, we’ve got a lot of new people in who are good players and the coach has a lot of experience.

“As a new club it will be the challenge of learning as we go and gelling together well.”

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Gibson also arrives at the club looking to bolster his own international ambitions further having starred at the Junior European Championships in Belgium.

He not only helped his side to bronze but also picked up the award for the best goalkeeper at the tournament, and Gibson knows he is in the best place to showcase his talents.

He added: “It’s massively important to be playing in such a top league. I learnt a lot during my time with Loughborough Students.

“Especially as a goalkeeper, to get used to the international pace of hockey, you need to be playing in the top league.

“I think that really pushed me on and got me to how I did with my U21s stuff was as a result of playing in the league and getting that experience.

“As a goalkeeper it is particularly hard as there’s only one number one and they always play and it’s hard to know when you may get that chance.

“So for me I just need to train as hard as myself and just progress as much as I can.”

Seven of the new stars

Harry Gibson - From: Loughborough Students. England U21 goalkeeper moves south from relegated Loughborough Students to join H&W influx of new players

Andy Hayward - From: Howick Pakuranga. New Zealand penalty corner specialist, who scored six goals at the World Cup

Pau Freixa Sureda- From: Atlètic Terrassa. Spanish star makes the move from Cataluña

Harry Slater - From: Reading. Experienced Premier League midfielder

Nick Page - From: Reading. Experienced Premier League performer

Matthew Botha - From: Royal Antwerp. Ex-South Africa international adds to Hampstead recruitment

Richard Alexander - From: Wimbledon. Having taken the job as head of hockey at Merchant Taylors' School in Northwood, the distinctive "Ratman" moves after a successful spell at Wimbledon.

NOW: Pensions is the official sponsor of the England Men’s Hockey League. Follow @NOWhockey or go to www.nowpensions.com