Stepping out at Wembley is every young footballer’s aim, but for Carlo Nash it carried extra poignancy. Indeed, having seemed an impossible dream for so long as he overcame trauma, rejection and – worst of all – a growing indifference to the game he loved, it is surprising that later it came to define many of the biggest moments of his career.
Successful with Crystal Palace and Stoke City among others, not a game went by where Nash didn’t pause and think back on the most unconventional of journeys to the top, thankful for what he had achieved. If anything, he preferred it that way.
“In some respects, I was glad for the way it happened,” he says, looking back. “The way I did it, which is very uncommon, meant I appreciated what I had a lot more than if I had come through the Academy. I had gone out and worked for a living, and knew what it was like on the other side. To get the opportunity at an older age was something I grasped with both hands.”