It is perhaps fair to say that Andy Williams has gone through more ups and downs during his three-season stay at Swindon Town than most footballers will go through in their whole careers.
Arriving in Wiltshire on a free transfer in the summer of 2012 after leaving Yeovil, Williams became a vital figure in the side that chased a second successive promotion under Paolo Di Canio, with the forward hitting six goals in just five matches over the Christmas period.
But, Williams was soon rid of his confidence as he endured an eight-game drought and he struggled to rediscover his early season form – failing to impress as Brentford dumped the Robins out of the play-offs at the end of the 2012/13 season.
The 2013/14 campaign ushered in a new era for the club as Mark Cooper took over the reigns at The County Ground, but Williams was shipped out on loan to former club Yeovil before a serious ligament injury brought his season to a brutal and premature end.
However, the former Hereford and Bristol Rovers hitman has always had character and fighting spirit in abundance, two qualities that have really come to the fore in a season that has seen Williams shake off a ‘super-sub’ tag to become Town’s leading scorer with twenty-two goals in all competitions.
It has been some turnaround for a player who’s future at SN1 looked bleak back in the summer, and with his contract due to expire at the end of this season, Williams is determined to enjoy at least one more high with Town as he bids to help fire the club into the Championship.
“It’s massive. It’s been an absolutely rollercoaster of a ride,” Williams told FLIC SPORT at Town’s pre-Wembley Media Day on Monday.
“I came here expecting it to be a rollercoaster for other reasons and it didn’t disappoint for the first six months, but then after that we tailed off that season and unfortunately didn’t get to the Wembley final like we were hoping to.
“I had a really bad season last season – I was sent out on loan where it didn’t work out for me, got a bad injury, came back here and it helped me to get to know a lot of the lads that I’ve ended up playing with this season, which I think has helped things.
“It’s been an unbelievable season so far. The last month aside, twenty-two goals in 31 starts, I could not have wished for more than that at the start of the season and I would like to think that I haven’t finished yet.
“One more game at Wembley would be a great way to finish it off.”
Williams has featured in a play-off final once before – although not at Wembley – as he scored in the Conference Play-Off Final against Halifax during the 2005/06 campaign.
“You can always compare finals to one another and I think it’s an experience that is better to have than not to have,” added the 28-year-old.
“I was quite young at the time and I think I’ve grown up a lot since then, but it’s still nice to have that experience of knowing it was a final that meant a lot to Hereford at the time.
“It was nice to play in that game and score as well, I lost a bit of composure towards the end when I came off but I would like to think that, now I’m older and wiser, it wouldn’t happen should I be given the chance to start the game on Sunday.”