STEPHEN Kelly is ready to battle it out with summer signing Sascha Riether for Fulham's right-back slot.
The Irishman was a regular last season after an injury to Zdenek Grygera back in November and was rewarded with a new two-year deal at Craven Cottage.
Boss Martin Jol has added to his defensive ranks with the season-long loan deal of Riether from German outfit Cologne.
But Kelly is determined to fight it out for a place in the manager's starting XI against Norwich on the opening day of the campaign.
“I feel I've made the number two shirt my own,” the former Birmingham City full-back told the Chronicle.
“I feel I was instrumental in us doing well last season and finishing ninth. I've really enjoyed it and I want to carry on where we left off.
“We're a Premier League team and you need two players in every position. If there's more competition it means you've got to rise to the challenge. Hopefully for me I've done enough last year to prove I'm good enough to play.
“I don't think they would've offered me a new deal just to have me as back-up, so hopefully the shirt's mine to lose.”
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