Chris Mepham has revealed he thought his career had hit rock-bottom when he was released by Chelsea in 2012.
Mepham had his contract terminated by the Blues and left for Brentford but he felt his career was going south by the fact that he was not needed by Chelsea anymore. He was acquired in January by Bournemouth in a £12m deal after making 43 appearances in the Championship.
"I sort of felt like my time in football was done. As I would do, obviously, getting released from Chelsea. Going on trial at QPR, Watford and getting turned away - you question your own belief and where you want to be. At that time I didn't feel confident in football. I just felt like carrying on trying would be a waste of time. Luckily, I had a change of heart and went for that Brentford trial and I'd like to think it has paid off. When I joined North Greenford, in my head I knew that was it really for me. I had the opportunities and was turned away, so where do you go next? Little did I know it would take me here." Mepham told Sky Sports News.
The 21-year-old defender is expecting to add his international caps when Wales play Slovakia. His fourth cap came against Denmark in the Nations League and the European Championship Qualifiers offer him more arena internationally to build his career he once thought over.
"The Nations League game was probably the biggest in my career to date. Obviously now, a qualifying game, that's completely different. It's a different type of test against a very good Slovakia team. We've got to prepare in the right way and hopefully, we come out on top. I think every game (in our group) is a must win really."
"It's important in front of a home crowd. Every time I sing the (Welsh) national anthem I get goosebumps. My dad and mum have been at games and it's exactly the same for them. It's nice to have my Welsh connection. I have family in Wales. It's a big thing for the family. Every time I play it's a proud moment to put the shirt on." Mepham concluded.