Last summer, West headed East, across the Midlands, the former, Aston Villa Women’s Player of the Year, Amy West, swapping the Claret and Blue, for the Red of Nottingham Forest, and, barring an injury set-back later in the latter stages of the season just finishing, she’s not really looked back.
In racking up twenty-three appearances, and netting three goals, Amy has helped Forest to a fifth place finish in the FA Women’s National League North, the National League Plate (a 2-1 win over AFC Wimbledon Ladies), and into this week’s Nottinghamshire FA County Cup final, against Mansfield Town Ladies.
That instant success, this season, and what the Forest boss, Andy Cook, sold to Amy back in July last year, are testament to her having made the right decision in swapping Birmingham, for Nottingham, arriving with plenty experience, including time spent in the Women’s Super League.
“Following a tough final season at Villa, my priority became regaining my confidence and getting back on the pitch,” explained Amy of her decision to move to Nottingham.
“Forest was a brilliant fit and I settled in really quickly; Andy discussed his plans, and explained the objectives and aspirations for the club, and it feels like a really exciting place to be playing football at the moment.
“It also helped knowing a few of the girls that I’d played with previously who gave great reviews!
“Whilst I’ve enjoyed my debut season, I feel I have a lot more to bring to this team.
“I have picked up a few knocks which has meant I’ve been in and out of the squad, but, as a team, I know we have more to give and definitely have the personnel to achieve great things.
“We’re still learning here and we strive to improve each week.”
As for the WSL experience, those injuries, knocks withstanding, it’s certainly helped Amy through the current campaign as she, and her fellow Reds, look to finish with a flourish.
“I think playing at that level (WSL) gave me a lot of tactical insight and a lot of exposure to the intensity required to play professionally,” continued Amy.
“One of the crucial differences is the speed of decision making with and without the ball which I found most noticeable.
“I try to think tactically with my movements on and off the ball and encourage those playing alongside me to do the same to make things difficult for our opponents.”
Growing into the Reds starting eleven, West’s season was a pretty decent one at that, those appearances, and goals, aiding in Forest’s continued progression.
In fact, after her return from injury, one such goal, was to be named as the clubs’ goal of the season, the one which she bagged, six minutes from time, in the 1-1 draw away to Loughborough Lightning, just a few weeks ago. Watch the goal below.
🤩 A fantastic strike from @NFFCWomen‘s Amy West to secure a point away at Loughborough Lightning last night ⚡️
— Nottingham Forest FC (@NFFC) April 14, 2022
“It was great to be back in and around the squad again and I’m glad to have managed to get on the scoresheet,” beamed Amy when discussing her return from injury, and of course, scoring goals.
“I definitely feel like I have a lot more to give from a goal contribution perspective so I’m really excited to kick on now and hopefully help the team in that way.
“As a group though, we’re all really looking forward to the cup finals (the success over Wimbledon, and County Cup with Mansfield) and have prepared well for them.
“We know to expect two very competitive games so we need to ensure we go into the game with clear mind-sets and play to our strengths.
“If you ask any footballer though, they’ll all say that winning silverware is a fantastic achievement and we are very much preparing to go out and fight to win both.
“Winning for us would be great as Forest as a club is going places, and the women’s team wants to play a significant part in that.”
Amy West was speaking ahead of this season’s cup finals, Nottingham Forest Women playing Mansfield Town Ladies in the Nottinghamshire FA Women’s County Cup final, at Basford, on Wednesday 11 May.
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @NFFCWomen Amy West in League Plate Final action v Wimbledon.