Hatters striker Jerome: I could keep on playing until I hit 40!

Town striker Cameron JeromeTown striker Cameron Jerome
Town striker Cameron Jerome
Forward to make a call on his future at the end of the campaign

Town striker Cameron Jerome will make a decision at the end of the season on whether he will continue playing next term, although admitted that the way he is feeling right now, he could possibly keep going until he is 40!

The 36-year-old is currently in his 19th year as a professional and showed he has definitely still go it, notching the 160th goal of his career from 674 matches during Luton’s 3-1 win over QPR on Saturday, after it was awarded to him by the Dubious Goals Committee on Monday.

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Jerome, who made his professional debut for Cardiff in October 2004, and has played for Birmingham, Stoke, Crystal Palace and Norwich to name just four clubs, joined the Hatters in June 2021, scoring five goals in 47 outings for the Hatters last term.

He agreed to stay for another year at Kenilworth Road in the summer, and has managed to find the net once in 12 appearances so far this term, as when asked what his plans were regarding his future, he said: “I said in the summer to the manager, I’d give it my all this year and then I’ll see where I’m at.

"Whether it’s here or somewhere else, I don’t know, but I do feel good, injuries, God willing, we’ll just see where we are at the end of the season.

"Mentally and physically I feel good, but whether I carry on or not is another thing.

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"You get to the point as a footballer where you’ve just got to enjoy every day and I’m at that sort of back end of my career where everything’s a bonus at the minute, so in that sense I’ll just take it as it comes.

“You never know, never say never, you just don’t know what’s around the corner, but physically I feel really good.

"If I was to call it now, I would say I could play until I’m 40, of course I could.

"I’m physically great, I’m athletically great, I’ve not lost any of my attributes, and as you get older you learn to adapt your game, so I probably could play until I’m 40.”

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The main thing for Jerome is that he still has the enjoyment of the game, and as he showed on Saturday, can still get about the pitch with boundless enthusiasm, outpacing Rangers defender Jimmy Dunne, a player 12 years his junior, for Luton’s crucial second, the ball rebounding off Town’s forward from keeper Seny Dieng’s clearance.

He continued: “I still enjoy it, it’s what it’s about at this age, helping the boys on a day-to-day basis, in and around them, helping to drive the standards and keeping the other boys on their toes.

”The manager sees me as a part of the squad, who he trusts and is able to call upon whenever he needs.

"That’s brilliant for me to be able to be involved at this level at this age.

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"I feel really good, my body feels good and I’m happy to contribute when I can.”

Boss Nathan Jones has been impressed with just what Jerome is still bringing to the Town squad in the twilight years of his career, stating it was important that he is managed correctly off the field to ensure Town get the best from him on it.

He said: “He can’t have an easier route, we don’t flog him, we bring him on as impact and he knows, he’s key to that.

"When he’s at it he has a real impact, so what we do is we look after him.

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"When we train him, we say you have to be one hundred mile an hour as when you come on, you have to be one hundred mile an hour.

"We don’t ask him to train five days a week, we don’t ask him to drive down from Manchester every single day, we look after him so that we get the best out of him.

“That’s just understanding your players and managing them.

"Someone like Louie Watson and someone like Alfie Doughty, they’re in every day and you’ve got to push them, got to make them stronger and better.

"Cameron’s a little bit different, he knows his body and so on.

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"He showed desire to stay at the level and he’s a big player for us as when he’s at it, as you saw, he can gave great, great impacts.

“The Swansea game, this game (QPR), he’s very experienced and still lightning quick.

"He hasn’t lost any of his athleticism, it’s just you have to manage that athleticism as if you flog him then you won’t get that athleticism.

"I can do far more work with Elijah (Adebayo), as I don’t need to do that with Cameron.”

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Meanwhile, Town’s top scorer Carlton Morris, who has played with Jerome at both Norwich and MK Dons, spoke highly of just what the striker brings to his game, adding: “This is the third club I've been with Cam Jerome at, I've been learning off him since I’ve been coming through and it’s no different now.

"He’s incredibly supportive, even when he’s not around, he’ll give me a text, give me support, so I'm always learning off him.

"I want to soak up as much information from a player whose had as good a career as him as I can.”