The Football League Paper - - INSIDE -

JEFF HUGHES hopes his in­jury hell is fi­nally over after he made a suc­cess­ful re­turn for Fleet­wood in mid­week.

The 29-year-old broke his leg in Fleet­wood’s League Two game against Hartle­pool eight months ago.

His long-awaited come­back was then de­layed by the need for a sec­ond op­er­a­tion, be­fore he had spe­cial­ist in­jec­tions to aid his re­cov­ery.

But the mid­fielder played the full 90 min­utes for the Cod Army’s de­vel­op­ment squad dur­ing the week against Wi­gan, and he ad­mits it’s a re­lief to see light at the end of the tun­nel.

“It’s the first time I’ve played pain free, that’s a big step,” said Hughes.

“It wasn’t the great­est of per­for­mances but I’m over the moon. Once you’re back play­ing, you can’t ex­pect ev­ery­thing to be as it was be­fore. You’ve got to keep on it.

“You’ve got a pro­gramme, you’ve got to progress and get things back.

“You don’t just walk back into the first team. It doesn’t work like that.

“I’ve had four days’ train­ing – five if you in­clude one with the kids. That’s since I’ve had the in­jec­tions. In the games I had played it hasn’t been quite right.

“This is the first time I’ve played with­out it hurt­ing me. It’s still early days but it’s good to be on the home stretch.”

FIT AGAIN: Jeff Hughes

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