Mace Goodridge made his first league start in over 12 months for the U23s this afternoon (Monday), in a 1-1 draw against Sheffield Wednesday.
The former Newcastle midfielder was sidelined in October last year, after picking up a serious anterior cruciate ligament injury in training.
But the youngster bounced back and made his first apperance for the U23s this season as a substitute at Charlton in September, but then suffered another setback after picking up another injury.
However, Goodridge came through a successful 90 minutes this afternoon, with an impressive performance, in which he described as an 'unbelievable feeling' after making his first start this season in the Professional Development League.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling, I have worked so hard to get back to this moment and this day.
“To be back playing and back in the team is such a nice feeling.
“Especially having come back at the beginning of September, playing 60 minutes then picking up another injury.
“I just really pleased for myself to get through it and finally finish a match and play all 90 minutes", said Goodridge.
The U23s are still currently unbeaten in all competitons, which stretches out to 14 matches in all competitions.
And Goodridge admits the side have been excellent this season and knew it wouldn't be an easy road back into the frame.
The former Manchester City youngster said: “The lads have been terrific this year, I didn’t really want to be the one that came into the side and then lose and be the unlucky charm”, laughed Goodridge.
“Everyone’s working their socks off and it’s showing that out on the pitch.
“We know if we can’t win the game, then we make sure we don’t lose it.
“But it’s a great squad that is always driving forward and hopefully it will be a successful season for us all.”