Jai Reason insists the main reason he has left Braintree to join Eastleigh in the division below the Blue Square Bet Premier is to play in his preferred central midfield role.

The 22-year-old agreed a two-year-deal with the Blue Square Bet South side yesterday.

He said he decided his future was no longer at Cressing Road because he’d become frustrated at playing on the left wing.

“It was a tough decision because I did not want to leave Braintree,” he said.

“But I did not want to play out of position anymore.

“I want to move back into central midfield and Braintree could not offer me that, but I will be playing there for Eastleigh.”

Reason joined Braintree from Crawley Town in September 2010 and helped them win the Conference South title and promotion to the Conference National.

And the former Ipswich academy player, who’s also had spells at Thurrock and Cambridge United, laughed off suggestions the move to the Spitfires was a move backwards in his career.

“I think this is a step forwards if anything,” he said.

“The facilities are great here and the club has great backing from the chairman and a very good manager.

“The fans here are great and there is so much potential here. It reminds me of what it was like at Crawley.”

Reason also denied the move had been motivated by money. He said: “It’s not financially motivated at all. I mean we’re in the non-league. The deal I have here is not much different from what I had at Braintree.

“I have my own coaching centre which does just fine, so I did not need to move for money.

“What I want to do is get back in the Football League and to be playing full-time football and I am confident I can do those things with Eastleigh.”