Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Dale Stephens was thrilled to get 90 minutes under his belt for the first time since last April, following the 1-1 draw with Wolves at the Amex yesterday.
Stephens made his first appearance in the starting line-up in almost 11 months and explained his joy at playing the full 90 minutes.
He told seagulls.co.uk, "I’ve been out a long time so I was really happy to come off the bench and get half an hour against Derby and I’m delighted to play 90 minutes against Wolves; hopefully I’ll play many more and I will see if I can play a part on Tuesday.”
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Despite playing out of his usual position in the centre of midfield, the 25-year-old was more than willing to play wide left when called upon by manager Chris Hughton.
“The gaffer wanted me to do a job on the left wing; I’m happy to do that and I’m happy to get forward and do my defensive responsibilities. I have played there before at my previous club, so the manager pulled me during the week and said do you feel comfortable playing there? I said yes of course, I will play anywhere.”
The ideal result evaded Stephens on his full return as Wolves scored four minutes after Albion went ahead, but the midfielder believes the team can put things right and is optimistic for the upcoming fixture against fellow strugglers Millwall on Tuesday.
“It’s a disappointing goal to concede and Stocko [David Stockdale] has been brilliant and made some great saves today, but from our point of view it’s frustrating to concede so soon after going 1-0 up. It’s happened a couple of times now, it’s something we’re conscious of and its something we have got to put right.
“We are confident going into the next game. Millwall are in the same situation as we are; we’ve got to play a couple of teams that are in and around us and we'll be looking for maximum points.”