JON WORTHINGTON is now targeting a Town return and smiled: “This is the best I’ve felt in a year!”
The 24-year-old Galpharm skipper hasn’t played a senior fixture since August but is now nearing a League I return after hernia surgery.
Worthington, who played 90 minutes for the reserves against West Brom last week, explained: “It’s a big relief to feel this good and I’m really positive. I’m only 24 and I’ve got lots of football left in me, so I’m excited to be back and injury-free.
“Having missed so much football over the last couple of months I’m feeling refreshed and ready and I’m really looking forward to putting myself in the first-team frame again.
“If I can add to the competition for places and keep people on their toes then that’s great, especially as we’ve got a tough set of matches coming up and this is when it matters.
“If I can be a part in the upcoming tests then I’ll be delighted, because this is the best I’ve felt in a year.”
Worthington (right) was never in contention for Friday’s terrific 1-0 League I victory at Swansea, but he’s not ruled out Saturday’s home clash with Leyton Orient and is definitely targeting the following FA Cup second-round clash with either Grimsby or Carlisle.
“This has been a really frustrating time for me because I’ve been playing in pain and, when that’s the case, you can only get through games – you can’t do yourself justice,” explained Worthington, who had treatment from Dr Ulrike Muschaweck.
“Playing injury-free means I can concentrate on my game again and getting back to the levels I know I can achieve. I am very fit because all I’ve been doing for the last few months is running around touchlines, so all I need now is more minutes actually on the pitch and I’ll be fine, I can push to get back in the first team.”
Manager Andy Ritchie is trying to fix a practice match for Worthington and Robbie Williams this week.
Worthington says his recovery is fantastic. “I collected the ball down the left side against West Brom and clipped it into the striker with my left foot,” he recalled.
“It has felt like I haven’t been able to use my left foot for such a long time and if I’d tried to do that even three weeks ago, I would have been curling up in agony. I would quickly have lost all movement, so to not feel the slightest problem was just great.”