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Big brother Matthew Barnes-Homer a mentor to young AFC Telford players

AFC Telford United boss Gavin Cowan has hailed veteran Matthew Barnes-Homer for acting as a big brother to top scorer Daniel Udoh and the club’s other forwards.

Matthew Barnes-Homer
Matthew Barnes-Homer

Thirty-two-year-old Barnes-Homer has been ‘immense’ in training, offering advice to seven-goal Udoh as well as Andre Brown and Amari Morgan-Smith.

He was said to have been a mentor to the Bucks’ younger players last year too and Cowan said: “He plays that role, but he’s also a player himself. His attitude, his character, he is an absolute pleasure to have around the place.

“His attitude and his character have been immense. He’s kept himself in brilliant shape – he’s half the size he was last year.

“He wants to get in the team himself but it’s that unconditional side – he doesn’t want to get into the team at the cost of others. He wants to get in there on his own merit.

“What he’ll do along the way is make sure the other lads are firing.

“Andre is playing well, Dan is and Amari has been – and they can put a percentage of that success down to Matthew and his application towards them, helping them out.”

Barnes-Homer has an impressive CV, having played for Wycombe Wanderers, Luton Town, Rochdale, Forest Green Rovers and Cambridge United.

He was prolific for Kidderminster Harriers and had a spell at Wilmington Hammerheads across the pond, as well as a stint at Swedish side Ostersunds.

The targetman made his first appearance of the season on Saturday, coming off the bench as Telford beat Ashton United 2-1 at the New Bucks Head.

“He is sharp. Let me just tell you, in training, at the moment, he is absolutely unreal,” added Cowan.

“It’s great for the supporters to know you’ve got someone there who believes we’re going to be successful and wants to help that process.

“He doesn’t want any plaudits but he wants to help the process.

“He comes on and looks sharp and in training he’s immense. I’ve not got enough good words to say about him.”

Barnes-Homer featured heavily for the Bucks over pre-season. It was originally thought the club would not be able to afford to sign him for this campaign, but Cowan was able to get him on board in the end, understood to be on non-contract terms.

He scored once in seven appearances last season and was sent out on loan to Halesowen Town.

Meanwhile, Morgan-Smith is currently dealing with a knee problem – explaining why he has not been in the last two matchday squads.

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