Mathew Stevens is determined to make an impact during his time at Kettering Town.
The young Peterborough United striker is set to lead the line in the Poppies’ opening Evo-Stik South League Premier game of the season at Slough Town on Saturday.
Stevens joined Kettering on a month-long loan deal last week and has made a positive start to life with the club as he opened the scoring in the 3-0 friendly success at Spalding United before finding the net twice as the Poppies rounded off pre-season with a 5-0 victory at Rushall Olympic last weekend.
With last season’s top scorer Aaron O’Connor missing the first three games of the new campaign due to suspension, Kettering boss Marcus Law has turned to the 19-year-old to find the goals as the Poppies seek a positive start.
And it’s a challenge Stevens is up for as he looks to help Kettering hit the ground running in what he believes could be a good campaign for the club.
“I am very pleased with the start I have had, I just need games,” Stevens, who scored against Kettering while on loan at Cambridge City last season, said.
“Last Saturday was only the third 90 minutes I’ve played in a while so I was just just pleased to play.
“It’s been very easy to settle in, the boys and staff are top class and have made me very welcome and I honestly think we have a good season in us.
“We are in it to win it as they say, so here’s to a good season
“I can’t wait for the Slough game, it’s going to be tough as all first games of the season are because everyone wants to get off to a good start.
“I’m hoping to get goals first and foremost but more importantly for me is to play men’s football and learn.
“So yes, I am only here a month but who knows, it could be longer.”
Stevens’ back story is an interesting one.
Born into a boxing family (his grandad Les Stevens was a professional and boxed John Conteh in 1974), Stevens won four national titles as an amateur.
But he quit the sport at the age of 15 in a bid to pursue his career in football, which started at Barnet and then saw him join The Posh on a three-year-deal last year.
“I had 16 fights and 16 wins and I won four national titles and two of those were golds for England,” Stevens added.
“I come from a boxing family. My grandad boxed John Conteh at the Albert Hall in the 70s and my uncles, my two brothers and my dad all boxed and they now run the very successful amateur boxing club Pinewood Starr.
“But it was football, which was always my first love.”