Hibs striker Jason Cummings insists moving out of the family home has made him more mature – but admits he is determined to play football with a smile on his face.
The 21-year-old bade farewell to mum Tracey and brothers Dean and Ross at the tail end of last year, although the forward still regularly returns for his dinner.
The transition off the pitch has had no effect on the highly-rated marksman’s scoring exploits, with Cummings already having notched 20 goals in 31 domestic games this season.
His latest strike came in the recent 1-0 win at Dundee United but Cummings was branded ‘stupid’ by head coach Neil Lennon after earning a second yellow card for handling the ball into the net in the 75th minute of the clash.
However, the former Hearts trainee is adamant that becoming more independent off the pitch is helping him grow up.
He said: “I’ve moved out of my mum’s – I’m becoming a man.
“It’s only been about five months to be honest, it is a bit of an eye opener although my mum still does everything for me, cooking, cleaning – everything.
“I always go back to my mum’s for my tea, I’ve got no food in my house ever.
“It’s got it’s pros and cons but it’s good having your own space. I’ve got two bothers that I lived with at my mum’s so trying to get into the toilet in the mornings was a nightmare back then, but now I’m okay.
“Clothes always went missing when I was at my mum’s too, my brothers would steal your clothes and everyone would eat your foot.
“It definitely does make you grow up, it makes you more mature – 100 per cent.
“On the pitch as the years go by you get more mature and you learn more. I’m still young.”
Hibs fans saw the two sides to Cummings at Tannadice after his stunning half-volley was overshadowed by his red card.
But the youngster, who suffered the embarrassment of missing a Panenka penalty in last April’s Scottish Cup semi-final victory over Dundee United, reckons he will always have that silly streak to his game.
Cummings, who was named Championship player of the month for February, said: “I think I’ll always be like that, I still play football like a did when I was at Hutchison Vale at my Boys Club.
“I still have that in me that I still play for banter at times. I take it seriously and I want to win but I take it as fun.
“I think I enjoy it a bit too much and I’ve still got that bit in me. That’s why I do some silly things at times.
“I don’t know if that will go away as I get a bit older.
“I think people do take it too seriously at times, it is a fun sport that you used to play for fun with your mates. Now, it’s you can’t do this or you can’t do that.”
Sunderland manager David Moyes was an interested spectator as Cumming’s scored the only goal of the game to see off promotion rivals United, prompting speculation that the former Manchester United boss was looking at Cummings.
But the forward, who was the subject of a failed £1.8 million bid from Peterborough last summer, reckons Moyes was probably there to cast his eye over team-mate John McGinn.
He added: “It’s mad to see big names like that coming to watch the games you’re in, Friday night away at Tannadice.
“David Moyes is a massive name although I didn’t know until after the game. He was probably watching super John McGinn, not me.”