Cameron Lindsay has his eyes on replacing Tim Brown in the heart of the Wellington Phoenix midfield after signing a new two-year deal with the A-League club.
The 19-year-old did not make an appearance for the Phoenix this season but the former Blackburn Rovers Academy player was happy to bide his time and learn from those around him.
"It sometimes wasn't easy this season, but I had to be patient in my first year at the club because there were obviously some very experienced players in the side," he said.
With vice-captain Brown quitting the sport to study in the United Kingdom, a spot is available in the middle of the park, something Lindsay, who can also play in defence, has set his eyes on.
"I would love to cement a spot in the midfield.
"I've got to show every day that I am ready to make my debut and then go on and establish myself in the team."
He is in contention for selection for the New Zealand under-23 side to be led by Ryan Nelsen at the Olympics but, if he misses out, he is hoping to go out on loan to be in good shape when Phoenix training resumes.