FORWARD-thinking Adam Robinson is relishing the chance to be a leader at York City Knights.

The 29-year-old pack star, who scored three tries in four games on loan for York from Halifax last summer, agreed a permanent deal this winter, becoming one of James Ford's key signings in the process.

And, while the 2017 squad is considerably more inexperienced than the team he turned out for in 2016, he says being able to help the youngsters' development has contributed to him loving the game again after a frustrating time at The Shay.

He has also sung the praises of head coach Ford.

"I had a few struggles at Halifax last year and I needed something fresh," he said of his switch from the Championship to the new-look League One club.

"Coming to York has reminded me why I play the game.

"The style of training James Ford does is great - we get done what we need to do and we move onto the next thing.

"He's a good bloke. He knows me and how to react around me. He's pretty honest with me, which is all you want from a coach really. He'll explain your flaws but he gives you praise as well when it's deserved.

"It was an easy choice really to come back here.

"We're a much younger squad (than the 2016 York squad) but I have an opportunity to be a leader in training, an experienced head, and I'm thriving on it really.

"If I can impart some of my knowledge from the Championship to help these younger blokes then it's a boost for me.

"I'm really enjoying the role of being one of the older players."

Newly-wed Robinson, on his return from honeymoon, was one of the standout players in last Sunday's friendly against Championship big guns London Broncos, playing at prop. It was York's second outing of pre-season.

He said: "I was away (on honeymoon) when we played Featherstone but it looked like that game was over after 20 minutes.

"With how we started against London, going in front and challenging all the way up, there were big improvements I think from all the boys."

Of his own display, he said: "I'd been away for three weeks. I know personally what I have to work on but I think I showed I'm used to playing at that kind of level. When I get fit I'll be better but I was pretty pleased with where I was at."

Robinson, formerly of Doncaster, Oldham, Dewsbury and Batley prior to his move to Fax, was used mainly in the back row by Ford in his four York outings last season, but is being earmarked for prop this year.

He explained: "I think I did a decent job in the back row when I was on loan last year but James Ford told me he wants me in the middle where I can use my experience a bit more, so I think that's what I'll be looking at. Both back-rowers played really well as well at the weekend."

Of the aims for the forthcoming season, he added: "We've not sat down and set specific goals. Effectively being a brand new club starting from scratch, its about improving every week and getting as far up the table as we can.

"When we find out where we are, we can reassess things and set goals from there."