Date:Monday April 24 2006
Eight months can feel like a lifetime if football, and it certainly seemed like an age since Wolves surprise summer signing Jackie McNamara graced the table like turf of Molineux prior to Saturday afternoon.
His appearance as second half sub may only have been an extended cameo, but in those forty five minutes he showed exactly what Wolves have missed in his absence, with a tidy display of no nonesense football, rarely putting a boot wrong, as he dominated their right hand side.
'It was good to be back in the first team, playing in front of a crowd again,' he said to the clubs official site.
'For me personally it would be nice to keep on playing, so it's a pity it's all coming to a close so soon.
'It's been a long wait to get back in but I'm just happy to have got out there and got a half in.
'The pitch was a bit better than playing for the reserves and it certainly makes a difference.
'But, more than anything, I'm just happy that I've got in the team again before the end of the season and have got myself in focus for next year.'
For a player with so many years under his belt, he has been relatively lucky in avoididng major injury until this point in his career.
So perhaps there was a certain inevetability that upon joining Wanderers he would pick up his first.
'I've had different injuries over my career and I've always been a quick healer but this was the worst one.
'The medical team has been great with me and it's just been a case of working hard.
'Sometimes you know when it's time for a day's rest and it's all worked out well.'
So now its time to look to the future, and a fresh campaign with Jackie Mac in the side. But first comes a short summer break with his loved ones before concentrating on helping Wolves claim a place at the top table once again.
'I'm now looking forward to a good holiday after the last game, a few weeks away with the family, because that's something I've not had for a few years.
'That will give me the chance to regroup and then come back and start again, hopefully with a good pre-season to set me up for a better run next season.'
Wolves desperately missed his pressence and influence this term, and look a different animal with him back playing in the side.
As the focus slowly turns to next season, the thought of a Wolves side containing the inspirational Scotsman is at least something to smile about, in the coming months.
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FA Cup game to be replayed following controversy (Tuesday December 16 2014)
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Clarke scores winner against former club (Monday December 15 2014)
Stats: Sheffield Wednesday v Wolves (Monday December 15 2014)
Wolves back amongst the points at last (Sunday December 14 2014)
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