Harry Wood has said that signing for Matlock Town was the correct decision after becoming one of the club’s youngest ever players.
Sixteen-year-old Wood made his debut in Matlock’s penalty shoot-out defeat in the Integro League Cup second round against Basford United, playing 90 minutes and scoring his spot-kick in Town’s 9-8 shoot-out loss.
Wood expressed his gratitude towards Matlock, who signed him after he left Chesterfield. He played for The Spireites for nine years before being released.
“Matlock has a really good setup, and all of the coaches have helped me,” said Wood. “They’ve made me a better player and I’ve matured quicker than I thought I would.
“I just want to do as well as I can for the first team. I think I did well enough to get noticed, hopefully the managers will pick me again. I want to push on and make more appearances.”
Wood mentioned a number of reasons that influenced his decision in joining Matlock, such as the standards of local education, but saw the club’s willingness to help younger players develop and gain experience as the deciding factor.
“I didn’t want to go straight back to another academy. I wanted to try something different, and it’s been brilliant so far,” said Wood. “Matlock are trying to bring players through. I had a few choices but I trialled and had a look round and thought that coming here was right.”
“It’s a different environment; it’s a lot more chilled out. Everyone else here is a lot more mature. When you get treated like an adult you act like an adult.”
Wood said that he hopes to play a pivotal role in the club’s fortunes next season. Town are currently 13th in the Evo-Stik NPL Premier League, but Wood believes there is huge room for improvement with the amount of young talent at Hopkins and Kirkwood’s disposal.
“Next season is massive for the club,” said Wood. “Next year is also a big year for me, I’m going to try and make more and more appearances.”