Awoniyi ended the season on a great note, but he had some setbacks
Awoniyi had a good start to life at Nottingham Forest last season. He scored the club’s first Premier League goal this season in a 1-0 victory against West Ham.
However, he only managed two Premier League goals till the World Cup break in November. Awoniyi picked form at the turn of the year and began to look like the player that Nottingham Forest paid €22million for last year.
He was man of the match for Nottingham Forest when they drew 1-1 against Chelsea in their first game of 2023. He then scored the winner for them in their second game of the year against Southampton.
Unfortunately for Awoniyi, he sustained a niggling injury that kept him out of action for over three months. He was sidelined from January till April, missing 12 games in the process.
In an exclusive interview with Soccernet.ng, Awoniyi revealed what was going through his mind during the period he was out.
“In life, there are always ups and downs. People that believe more suffer more, but it does not mean that those who don’t believe don’t also suffer,” Awoniyi told Soccernet.ng.
“There are things in life one cannot control, and injuries are part of them. During those three months when I was injured, I was lucky that my mum and dad were with me in the UK, and that was the first time that they really saw me really injured.
“My mum was almost crying every day because I was on crutches for about a month, and my wife was also always crying. But I am someone who believes that things may go well every time.”
“Even if the season did not go well, I will still be Taiwo. Of course, I would be sad, and I’d ask myself questions.
“I was not happy too, because the injury came at a time when I was beginning to understand myself and the team and get into form.
“When people see me talking about God, it is not because I am a pastor. It’s just because of how miraculously he has always been working in my life. Imagine you’ve been doing great and all of a sudden you’re out.
“The best you can do is to support the team from outside and keep your spirit alive, but there will surely be times when you would feel down and doubt yourself,” the former Union Berlin striker added.
“Blood was taken out of my legs every week for three months. These are things that you can’t control, but the good thing you can do for yourself is to listen to the medical staff and believe in yourself.”
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Upon his return, the 25-year-old hitman needed seven games to hit his stride. When he eventually reached top gear, he single-handedly saved his club from relegation.
Awoniyi scored five goals in the Tricky Trees’ final three games of the season to help them to a 16th-place finish in the league.