Having the full support of his manager and team-mates ensured there were no nerves for Luton’s teenage centre half Akin Famewo ahead of his full league debut in the 1-1 draw at Hartlepool on Tuesday night.
The 17-year-old was selected after Johnny Mullins was missing with a tight hamstring, and as part of a youthful back-line that included James Justin and Dan Potts, turned in an accomplished performance well above his years.
The gaffer is helping me out and they’re all showing trust in me, so what’s there to be nervous about when everyone is backing me?Akin Famewo
Afterwards, Famewo, who also gave one of the most impressive post match interviews of a debutant in recent times, said: “It’s definitely been cope-able. It hasn’t been something that I’ve stressed about or over-thought it because we are such a good unit, as a squad.
“I felt comfortable out there because, at the end of the day, I have been training with them week in, week out, so it is my team.
“We are a good squad, we are a good unit, so jumping in there, whenever I’m needed, I feel comfortable to come in and do my part for the team.
“Sheez, he’ll talk to me and go through things at training.
“He’s helping me out, the gaffer is helping me out and they’re all showing trust in me, so what’s there to be nervous about when everyone is backing me?
“I’m just trying to do everyone proud, make the club proud, the fans proud and just repay the favour because they’ve given me the opportunity. You’ve got to him something back.”
Famewo had experienced life in the first team before, having been picked for the EFL Trophy clash at Gillingham, but knew this was a very different affair, with League Two points at stake.
He continued: “I’d say they were two very different games, but two very important experiences to have at the start of hopefully a long career.
“Going into it, I wasn’t looking at it different, but it was important that I focused on this differently to the cup, because there were big points on the line and it’s the league game and not a different cup.
“The league is the most important, it is more of an important game that we need to focus on to progress.
“I am buzzing, that’s the correct word for that. I’m obviously very happy that we ground it out to get the point too.
“It would have been fantastic to get the three points, but it’s what happens it games. It’s all about working as a team and learning as a team, we’ll get there.”
Although Town created plenty of chances to make it back-to-back victories, they eventually had to settle for a point, which wasn’t a bad outcome according to the youngster.
He said: “It’s important that we keep moving forward. A point might not be three but it’s better than no points.
“It’s still a step in the right direction, so hopefully if we get the next game out of the way, we get those three points and then that’s seven out of nine.
“You obviously want nine points but it’s not something you can really complain about.”
With Luton heading to Cheltenham this weekend, Famewo would love to keep his place, but remained under no illusion as to his place in the pecking order for the time being, adding: “I’m 100 per cent respectful to them (Scott Cuthbert and Johnny Mullins), I’m not looking to say, ‘it’s my spot now’.
“Whenever I’m needed I’ll be there for the gaffer. He knows that I’m thankful that he puts his trust in me.”