KASHKET IS CASH­ING IN Wy­combe ace on a goal spree

The Football League Paper - - INSIDE - By Ben Baker

YOU could have ex­cused Scott Kashket for think­ing his big break was never go­ing to ma­te­ri­alise, but now he has found a happy home in Wy­combe the 20year-old is quickly mak­ing up for lost time.

At a young age the world ap­peared to be at Kashket’s feet as he was a promis­ing fut­sal player, rep­re­sent­ing Great Bri­tain’s ju­nior team at the 2009 Euro­pean Mac­cabiah Games in Vi­enna.

From there the Chig­well-born striker was picked up by Span­ish side Her­cules in 2012 and, aged 16, had hopes of star­ring along­side Lionel Messi and Cris­tiano Ron­aldo in La Liga.

In­jury and fit­ness woes saw the for­ward re­turn to Eng­land the fol­low­ing year with Ley­ton Ori­ent, but he looked set for an­other big move in Novem­ber 2013 as he was in­vited to train with Mac­cabi Tel Aviv af­ter scor­ing one and set­ting up the other two in a 3-0 FA Youth Cup win over AFC Totton.

How­ever, on his first day with the Is­raeli giants Kashket suf­fered an in­jury and was soon back with Ori­ent, where he im­pressed with six goals in six games for the youth team and signed his first pro­fes­sional con­tract in Fe­bru­ary 2014.

But that was a good as it got and, af­ter only a hand­ful of ap­pear­ances for the first team, he was loaned to Na­tional League strug­glers Welling United in March this year and had his con­tract ter­mi­im­pact nated in the sum­mer af­ter then-O’s boss Andy Hessen­thaler said the young­ster wasn’t part of his plans.

Lady Luck fi­nally cut him a break though as, on Au­gust 31, he was signed by Gareth Ainsworth on a short-term con­tract and headed into this week­end with nine goals in nine Wy­combe Wan­der­ers games, in­clud­ing a hat-trick last week­end in a 5-0 FA Cup thump­ing of Ch­ester­field.

“I am very pleased with how things are go­ing right now and I couldn’t be hap­pier at the mo­ment,” said Kashket.

Success

“It was great to score my first hat-trick in English foot­ball and to do it in the FA Cup too was re­ally spe­cial as I grew up watch­ing that com­pe­ti­tion and want­ing to play in it.

“Since com­ing to Wy­combe the boys have all been re­ally wel­com­ing with me – the man­ager has been great too and it all clicked straight away.

“The man­ager plays me the way I want to play, where I start out wide and am able to come in­side and it has been work­ing so far.

“I am one of those play­ers who gets more con­fi­dent the more I score and with Christ­mas com­ing up and a lot of games, it is a good time to go on a streak.

“I didn’t think it would take as long as it did for me to make an in foot­ball but ev­ery­thing that hap­pened has made me very de­ter­mined.

“When I was in Spain I was do­ing my GCSEs at the same time and I strug­gled as I was a bit home­sick, but now I am more ma­ture for ev­ery­thing I have been through.

“I have al­ways be­lieved in my­self and have just been wait­ing for a man­ager to give me a chance. It didn’t work out at Ley­ton Ori­ent and I came to Wy­combe to play foot­ball and en­joy my­self again – and thank­fully I have done that.”

Ainsworth ad­mit­ted af­ter Kashket’s FA Cup hero­ics that the young for­ward had ex­ceeded all ex­pec­ta­tions and fully de­served his new con­tract – signed on Mon­day un­til 2019 – with his orig­i­nal one only run­ning up to De­cem­ber 31.

And Kashket be­lieves it is his back­ground in fut­sal that has helped him hit the ground run­ning at Adams Park, urg­ing more young­sters to take up the game.

“I re­ally be­lieve fut­sal helps my game a lot,” he added. “It makes you more re­laxed on the ball and be­cause it is played on a smaller pitch you need to be skil­ful and con­fi­dent in pos­ses­sion.

“It is very tech­ni­cal and that helps you – you can do bet­ter in smaller spa­ces and it adds to your skill set.

“I think it would be good if more young­sters did fut­sal as it would help im­prove the stan­dard of play and would def­i­nitely help them in 11-a-side too.”

PIC­TURE: Dan West­well

IN FULL FLIGHT: Wy­combe’s Scott Kashket on the burst against Notts County yes­ter­day

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