Matlock Town striker opens up about battling depression

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Matlock Town’s academy striker Spencer Candlin has openly expressed his thoughts after overcoming a difficult year which left the youngster uninterested in football.

The ex-Teversal FC player said: “I went through a tough time for about a year. I completely lost interest in everything. I didn’t like football or anything. I didn’t know what was up with me to be honest but I was just low with no confidence in myself. I was at rock bottom – and there was nothing I could do.”

The teen from Mansfield admitted to suffering with depression, something Tottenham Hotspur and England fullback Danny Rose has spoken openly about. Candlin said: “Unfortunately I have been through it. It’s nice to know that it can now be spoken about by someone like Danny Rose and to know someone else has felt that.”

Having dislocated his pelvis a couple of years ago, the forward felt the effects of the injury not just physically but mentally. Candlin said: “I didn’t think I’d be as strong as I was or as quick as I was. I was worried – I put on weight as I was out for so long, I just didn’t think I’d have the same ability as I did before.”

Candlin eventually got back into the routine of playing after the setback, however it wasn’t just the injury that affected his mind-set. He said: “I think it was exams, the build-up to them took my mind completely off football. I wanted to concentrate on it but I just lost all my desire for football – I’ve comeback now though – and love it even more.”

Matlock’s academy play in the Northern Premier League Football Academy League which allows opportunities to play at Evo-Stik League stadiums. UEFA qualified coaches also train the players three/four times a week, helping them gain the technical ability and fitness needed on a daily basis.

The striker said: “In training you have to put in 100pc - especially if you want to make it in football. I don’t want to make it; I need to make it.”

Candlin has shown, that despite facing many difficulties at such a young age, hard work can help you achieve your goals.

“I never thought I’d be playing with the same ability I once had, I took my mind off it all but I came back and trained even harder than I ever have before and here I am now,” he said.