Date: 8th January 2016 at 8:22pm
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Goalkeeper Fraser Forster has described his return to action for the Development Squad as being ‘perfect’ following his long spell on the sidelines with a serious knee injury.

The 27 year old returned to action in the Under 21 Premier League Cup one nil triumph over Chelsea earlier in the week and he was called upon to make a number of saves across the match at Staplewood.

Speaking to saintsfc following what was his first game since last March, Forster explained.

‘Obviously, a bit rusty, but it was perfect. I’m buzzing to get 90 minutes under my belt – it`s probably been nine-and-a-half months now. I’m just delighted, just to kind of get through it, and the victory makes it that much better.’

The stand out save from his performance came in the 68th minute as he tipped a shot onto the post with his outstretched left foot, and it was a save Forster was pleased to have made – presumably mainly because it showed his knee was up to such movement again.

‘It was nice to make the save. It just obviously flicked off my studs and onto the post, but the lads really kind of limited the chances that Chelsea had. They were fantastic. Jack Stephens and Alfie Jones putting in the blocks. It was one of those games that it was tough and we had to dig in, but we got the result.’

The England stopper also had thanks for the staff that had helped him back on the road to recovery.

‘Obviously I’m not quite there yet, but I can’t really thank enough people. It was brilliant to see the medical staff here and I can’t really put into words to say how much to thank them. I don’t really know what you can say. It’s stage by stage, one day at a time. We’ve done everything correctly for the last nine months and not rushed. We`ve done it step by step and that’s how we’ll continue to the end. There’s no rush. I just want to make sure I get it right and when that day comes it will come. It will be good to play a few more 90 minutes, get that under my belt and just go from there, but like I said we’re looking step by step, day by day and we’ll see where it takes us.’

Manager Ronald Koeman was also speaking about his return to action after he came through the game, and he said a sensible plan was in place to slowly bring him back into the first team fold.

‘Fraser Forster did his first game yesterday, very good, very important for him. A clean sheet, a good performance, and it gives the player a good boost. He will play this Monday, his second game, and after that, if everything goes well, of course he gets chances like everybody to be involved in the team. I’m very pleased for him, because he did a great job with the medical staff. He was so happy to be back and the next step is coming back in the first team.’

Koeman wouldn’t rule in or out a first team return for next weekend though.

‘I don’t know, it’s possible. It’s all about his performance next Monday and then finally of course I will have a discussion with Dave Watson about the goalkeepers, and the best will start, and also in the goalkeepers it’s a big competition.’

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