Ryan Watson says he is ‘delighted’ to be back at Sixfields.
The Leicester City midfielder has signed a loan deal with the Cobblers until January 1, and says he can’t wait to get playing again after 10 months on the sidelines.
Watson hasn’t played a senior game since he lined up for the Cobblers at Morecambe on September 27 last year, a cruciate ligament injury to his right knee ensuring his first loan spell at Northampton was cut short.
But the 22-year-old is now fully fit again, has been playing in the Leicester City Under-21 team, and ready to return to the Cobblers to pick up where he left off last season.
“I am delighted to be back, and just looking forward to getting going and playing some games again,” said Watson.
“I’ve recovered from my injury, and have spoken to Alan Knill a bit, and he was keen to get me back, and I was excited to come back.
“I was keen to come back because I loved it when I was here last time, and it was good experience for me.
“Things didn’t end well with the injury, but I am happy to be back.”
And he added: “It’s the first serious injury I have suffered, and it was obviously devastating at the time.
“But I am feeling strong now again, and feeling confident.
“It is horrible when you are out because you just want to play football.
“When I found out what I had done, it was a setback, but Leicester were great and supported me through it and have got me back fit.
“Now I just want to play and put that behind me.”
“I have missed a lot of football, and getting League games at this stage of my career is what I need.”
Chris Wilder and Alan Knill clearly made an impression on Watson during his stay at Sixfields last term, and the player is comfortable returning to a club where he says he ‘feels wanted’.
“When I found out about my knee injury, the gaffer and Knilly were very supportive,” said Watson.
“That gave me a bit of a confidence boost and made me want to come back.
“They have been great, and I am excited to work with them again. It is always nice to be wanted, and to be made to feel wanted.”
Watson is also walking into a dressing room with a lot of familiar faces, and he believes he is joining a club primed for success.
“There are still a lot of players here from when I was here,” he said.
“I know them, and I know the club want to try and get in the play-offs or promotion.
“It is a club going in the right direction and the signs are good.”
A cruciate knee ligament injury is right up there in seriousness bracket when it comes to injuries for footballers.
Watson spent eight months without a ball at his feet as he went through his rehabilitation.
He eventually started playing again with the Foxes Under-21s, and has gone through a full pre-season, going away with the Leicester City first team squad for their training camp in Austria.
Watson feels stronger than ever, and said: “My knee feels fine now, and it is just a confidence thing for me.
“Playing games in the under-21s I got my confidence back, and I am that stage now where I need to push on in my career and get some first-team games.
“I was out for eight months, but the timing was okay, because when I done it it meant I was coming back for pre-season.
“I started that with everybody else, so I probably could have come back a little earlier, but with the games being when they were it has worked out better for me.”