Aaron Williams ‘a different animal’ for AFC Telford
AFC Telford United striker Aaron Williams insists he has returned from the coronavirus lockdown ‘a different player’ ahead of the new season.
Williams was out running on a daily basis from his home of Shawbirch, leading to boss Gavin Cowan describing the striker as ‘a different animal’ and ‘like a new signing’. The 26-year-old was disappointed with his 10-goal return last season, his first with the Bucks, and has knuckled down to ensure he came back with an improved hunger.
“I’ve come back properly different to how I came in last year and how I finished the season,” said former Brackley and Harrogate hotshot Williams. “I haven’t stopped regards fitness and have seemed to lose weight, even though I wasn’t overweight.
“I’ve seemed to come back in different shape, with a different mentality and different hunger.
“I don’t know if it’s because I’ve got one year on my contract now or because I’ve got a daughter to provide for. As soon as the gaffer saw me on the first day of pre-season he said ‘you’re like a completely different animal’.
“He said there’s a different mentality. I don’t know if it’s because I didn’t have the season I wanted last season, only scoring 10 goals which is the least I’ve ever scored in the Conference North when I’ve played.
“I think it’s a kick up the a**e that I needed.”
Williams and new recruit Jason Oswell, formerly of Wrexham, are the two recognised centre-forwards in the Bucks ranks so far, with Cowan likely to be in the market for more firepower.
The Bucks boss this week added creator-in-chief James Hardy to his squad.
Williams, whose previous club Harrogate were last week promoted to League Two, has previously top scored at Rushall Olympic and Brackley and played in the Football League with Peterborough and Newport County.
The striker, who penned a two-year deal last summer, was determined to use the pause from football to his advantage.
He added: “I haven’t stopped. When we were told the season had ended I was on to the gaffer straight away asking for a bag of balls.
“I was asking to use the pods (pitches) at the ground just to keep ticking over.
“I enjoy road running, every day for months I’ve been running, seeing different parts of Telford.
“I knew the season had finished but I was convincing myself it’d start up again. I kept running and kept the ball work going.”