IF there’s one player who needs no incentive to do well against Town tomorrow it is Dwayne Mattis.
The former Huddersfield trainee is on-loan for a month at Walsall having fallen out of favour at parent club Barnsley. He looks a certain starter for the reigning League Two champions, who search for their third league win on the spin.
Mattis last donned the Town jersey three-and-a-half years ago in a 3-1 win over Yeovil at the Galpharm.
Manager Peter Jackson released the 26-year-old from his contract in the summer of 2004 after guiding the club to promotion.
However, Mattis soon earned a free-transfer switch to Bury where he made over 100 appearances in all competitions for the Gigg Lane outfit.
Mattis’ impressive form in midfield during the 2006/07 campaign earned him a £50,000 transfer to Simon Davey’s Barnsley in the January transfer window. Niggling injuries and the form of other players prevented Mattis from making an impact at Oakwell. The Republic of Ireland Under 21 cap made just three appearances in Barnsley’s successful bid to avoid the drop.
Despite training with Barnsley throughout the closed-season, Mattis has made Davey’s starting eleven once. With first-team opportunities at a premium, he was delighted to sign for Richard Money’s side on a temporary basis a week ago.
Mattis said: “I got a call on Thursday from the Barnsley manager to say Walsall were interested and I jumped at the chance. I wanted to get back playing but I didn’t want it to be that far away. Walsall is an hour, hour-and-a-half away so is a manageable distance to travel.”
On playing against Town for the first-time, he added: “I can’t wait to be honest – I’m really up for that one. I’ve been dying to play against them ever since I left three or four years ago.
“I’m Huddersfield born and bred so I always read the papers to see how they are doing. Even though a lot of the lads and the manager are not there from when I played, I always look for their results.
“It’s going to be a difficult game – they have got some good players and seem to be getting a bit of form together.
“But we are at home and have had two good results so I don’t think we have anything to fear in this division. We will go out for the win.”
Of the senior squad left from Mattis’s time at the Galpharm are Nathan Clarke, Jon Worthington, Danny Schofield, Andy Booth and Andy Holdsworth. Matt Young made the senior squad shortly after Mattis had left.