Anthony Wordsworth was thrilled to be back out playing and scoring on Saturday, but admitted he still has some work to do to reach full fitness.
Wordsworth has been out since April with a hamstring problem, but the midfielder revealed his recovery was slowed down by another operation over the summer on his foot after treading on a wine glass celebrating Arsenal’s FA Cup win.
Wordsworth said he is slowly getting back to fitness and his performance and goal on Saturday was a step in the right direction.
“I’m really, really stiff at the minute, but scoring the goal makes it feel a little bit better,” he said after the game.
“It was a bit of a surprise to get the nod because I haven’t trained much. I think in the first half that was probably clear to see just how rusty I was, but the manager has shown faith in me – he wanted to put me in and I wanted to repay him.
“It was nice to be back out there with the boys again. I’ve been watching on from the stands and when you’re watching you’re helpless.
“It was nice to be out there with them and hopefully things can turn.
“I thought in the second half we were brilliant. Macca had a chance with a header and there were a couple of half chances we could have done better with, but it was clear to see how much better we were in the second half.”
Wordsworth will be eyeing another start away to Fleetwood this weekend, where he scored in the 1-1 draw last season.
Blues will go there after gaining some confidence from the second half fightback on Saturday.
Wordsworth added: “[At half time] we just said to stay positive and he [Phil Brown] believed in us. Him and Cocko [Graham Coughlan] said that Northampton tire after 60 minutes and I think they got that right because it looked like their legs had gone. It was just a shame we couldn’t get the third goal.
“I thought we were the better team up until they scored the first goal, we just needed to get ourselves in front.
“I think if we got the first goal then we would have gone onto win the game, but at the minute things aren’t going for us.”
“I’ll be looking to play, but next week is massive for me.
“I’ve still got to do a lot of work on my hamstring because it’s still not 100 per cent and I’ve got to do a lot of work on my fitness.”