Development Squad midfielder reflects on new one-year dealJermaine Udumaga said that his new one-year contract, signed last week, will keep him hungry as he looks to build on his unused substitute appearance at Charlton Athletic last month.
The 19-year-old joined Brentford on trial at the end of the 2013/14 season, having previously been a scholar at Oxford City, and signed a one-year deal in the summer.
This season the attacking midfielder has been in fine form scoring eight goals in 18 matches from an attacking midfield position.
That form has seen him sign a new one-year deal to run until the summer of the 2016.
Speaking to Bees Player Jermaine said that he can’t rest on his laurels with a one-year deal and that he needs to work hard every day to try and earn another contract this time next season.
“I am very pleased to get a new contract,” said Jermaine.
“It has been a long season for me but a good season.
“I have scored quite a few goals and they have rewarded me for what I have done so I am quite happy.
“Lee told me I might be getting a contract about a month and a half ago and they offered it to me last month.
“Offering people long contracts can be seen as a good thing but it can be a bad thing as you might start relaxing and becoming lackadaisical.
“If you get a one year contract you know that you have to work hard for your next contract and that is what I have had to do.
“It has kept me hungry.
“I am not saying that if you get a long contract you are going to relax but this has kept me hungry and I have had to work hard for my new contract.”
This season has been a breakthrough season for Jermaine who joined The Bees on trial at the end of the 2013/14 season having spent time with Oxford United.
The attacking midfielder has scored eight goals and provided just as many assists in the Under-21 Professional Development League Two South.
Jermaine has been really pleased with his form this season and believes a lot of the credit should go to Development Squad manager Lee Carsley for the faith that he has shown in the attacking midfielder.
The 19-year-old admits that playing as a striker doesn’t come naturally to him but he has been pleased with the way he has adapted to the new position.
“Lee has had a big impact on how much I have progressed here,” said Jermaine.
“He believed in me from when I first came in and he said that I just had to keep doing what I was doing and he would stand by me.
“That is what I have done and I have now got a new contract.
“I don’t see myself as a striker but if I have to play there then I will because you need to be versatile as a footballer.
“I see myself as either an eight or a ten driving from midfield and getting goals.
“I am definitely pleased with my goals tally.
“My aim for the season was to get between five and ten goals.
“I have gone beyond five now and want to go beyond ten and try to get to 15 or 20 if I can.”
Jermaine’s recent run of form, which has seen him score doubles in the games against Bristol City and QPR and the winner against Ipswich Town last week, hasn’t gone un-noticed by first-team manager Mark Warburton.
Jermaine was named amongst the substitutes for The Bees 3-0 Sky Bet Championship defeat to Charlton Athletic last month.
The 19-year-old said he was absolutely buzzing when he found out he would be on the bench and said the whole day, despite the result, was a great learning experience and one he is keen to repeat.
“I was buzzing when I was on the bench,” said Jermaine.
“Charlton Athletic was the first club that I was at.
“To go back there with the first-team was a great experience.
“Any young lad who makes the bench or makes their debut for Brentford is going to very happy.
“I took a lot from the day just by being around some of the first-team players without even watching them play.
“It was a great experience for me.
“My main aim is to try and break into that first-team and if I keep working hard and playing how I am then I don’t see why not.
“I need to keep working and hopefully the chance will come for me and I can take it.”
Bees Player subscribers can listen to the full interview here