I’ve been improving even though I haven’t been playing – Nottingham Forest’s Matty Cash on becoming a student of the game


Taking up position at the University of Nottingham to promote a special ticket offer, it is something of a new experience for Matty Cash.

But while the Nottingham Forest midfielder may not have tasted student life as many of his peers might, he has still been doing a spot of learning of his own.

While sidelined through injury, Cash has very much become a student of the game.

A broken ankle suffered in pre-season meant he missed the start of the new campaign, with the blow coming just as he was finding some form over the summer.

He is back fit and raring to go now, having got a couple of Under-23 games under his belt – including a goal against arch-rivals Derby County in the Premier League Cup – but has been using his time on the sidelines wisely.

“Obviously it’s a kick in the teeth getting injured, but you’ve got to look at it as part of football. I’m still only 20 years old,” said Cash.

“When I was injured in pre-season, I was still watching loads of games and looking at how I can improve.

“If you look at it in a way, I was still improving even though I wasn’t playing.

Nottingham Forest’s Matty Cash celebrates making it 2-1 against Derby under-23s

“You look at things differently. I’ve watched every (Forest) game since I’ve been injured and it does help because you get to see a lot of things that you don’t otherwise see.

“Sitting in the stand is a completely different one to when you’re sitting on the bench or playing. You get a completely different view.

“You learn a lot of stuff watching games and I’ve had the opportunity to do that while I’ve been injured.

“Watching our midfielders, watching opposition midfielders, watching wherever I’m going to play, it all helps.

“I’m raring to go now, I’m ready, so when my chance comes I just need to take it.”

The recent international break has given Cash, and some of his other Forest team-mates who have been struggling with injuries – be they niggling or otherwise – extra time to recuperate.

There has also been plenty of work done on the training ground, ahead of Saturday’s trip to Birmingham City – a match Cash will hope sees his first appearance of the season.

“We had four solid days of training. For me, it’s important to keep my fitness up,” the 20-year-old said of the past fortnight.

Matty Cash goes down injured against Girona.

“We had a little break as well, which was nice – it’s needed after a few hard days.

“It’s important for me to get that fitness in, which I did do.

“We work on things every day in training. The gaffer is massive on training and we all enjoy it.

“We’re working on improving every day.

“We’ve done a bit of fitness work to keep us ticking over and done a mixture of things – scoring goals; it’s nice to keep scoring goals on the back of that one at Derby!”

Cash added: “I’ve had two 23s games under my belt; it was important to get that match fitness in.

“I’m slowly starting to feel how I was in pre-season; really fit and strong.

“I’ve just got to be patient now. I’ve spoken to the gaffer and he’s told me that I’ve just got to keep working hard in training, then when the chance comes I’m going to take it. Hopefully I will.

“I’ve just got to keep working hard.

“There’s loads of competition. We’ve got a fantastic squad, but that’s all part of it – it’s good to have a good squad because then we’re going to be pushing each other.”

Nottingham Forest manager Mark Warburton

Cash was at the University of Nottingham to boost the Reds’ offer of £5 tickets for students for the clash with Norwich City at the City Ground on November 21.

He hopes it can lead to a bumper crowd on the night as Mark Warburton’s side look to continue their climb up the table.

And he enjoyed venturing to unfamiliar surroundings.

“I like coming to places like this and meeting new people,” said Cash. “It’s nice to come down here.

“A lot of my mates from home go to uni. but I actually haven’t experienced it. Luckily I got the opportunity to sign for Forest, otherwise I probably would have been going to uni.

“A lot of people get to go to uni, but I’ve sacrificed so much to be where I am right now. I don’t look backwards, I just want to look forward and focus on Forest.

“I don’t think it’s an opportunity I’ve missed because I’m playing for a massive club. I’m loving that.

“All the support we get from the Forest fans is massive and really important, whether
it’s younger kids or older people.

“It’s nice that students can get into the Norwich game for £5, and hopefully there will be a big crowd there.”



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