Defender on fight for fitnessAnton Ferdinand has expressed his delight at returning to action on Monday evening, and has set his sights on challenging for a first team place.
The defender played an hour in the under 21s 2-0 victory over Brighton and Holve Albion - keeping a clean sheet as he returned from a troublesome hamstring injury.
"It was a great feeling and very enjoyable," Ferdinand told readingfc.co.uk. "After the frustration I’ve had picking up little niggles, to finally get through 60 minutes is promising. There is still a bit of a way to go but I’ve taken the first steps en route to the first team. Of course I felt rusty but slowly but surely the game started coming back to me, I started getting into positions that were familiar to myself. I’ve been a pro for a very long time so it was a bit weird feeling rusty, but it was always going to be that way. The fact that I got through an hour and felt comfortable....I'm delighted."
The 29-year-old, who has 277 professional appearances under his belt, was joined by Danny Williams for the fixture - with light now truly at the end of the tunnel for a number of Nigel Adkins' recuperating stars.
"A lot of our experienced players have been out which doesn't help. For Danny in his first game today to come back and run the game the way he did was fantastic. Seeing someone who has just come back from a knee injury run the way he does is a breath of fresh air. For a defender it gives us a bit of breathing time as he carries the ball up the pitch. Our senior players are coming back and that can only mean good things for the manager and for the club as a whole."
Read the report from the U21s win here.