Forster-Caskey: "I couldn’t be happier right now"

It took just 25 seconds for Jake Forster-Caskey to make his mark on his long-awaited return to action, netting the opener in the U23s’ 2-2 draw at Watford on Tuesday afternoon.

The midfielder has been out of action since last May after suffering an ACL injury – the second time he has faced such a setback in his career – but after10 months of rehabbing, he was finally able to pull on the red shirt again and take to the field, gaining 45 minutes against the Hornets.

“I couldn’t be happier right now,” he said.

“Again, I have had a huge spell out and, again, I know I will come back better with even more hunger.

“It was always the plan to get minutes with the U23s and getting minutes in a match is very different to training so it’s another thing ticked off my list.”

“I felt pretty calm about the game,” added Forster-Caskey.

“I know I have put the work in and I have been through it before so this time I have found my return a lot more comfortable.”

The 27-year old turned in Daniel Kanu’s cross to open the scoring after just 25 seconds in a scintillating first half of action.

Around 90 more seconds would elapse before the hosts drew level almost immediately through Tiago Cukur, but Aaron Henry’s penalty on 21 minutes restored the Addicks’ lead after Kanu was fouled in the box.

Watford would, however, hit back once more, taking just five minutes to draw level again via Jimiel Chikukwa’s strike. That would draw an end to the scoring and a goalless second half meant a share of the spoils for the two sides.

With 45 minutes under his belt, Forster-Caskey will step up his minutes with another upcoming U23 fixture, before he is ready to be involved in first-team action again, and it can’t come soon enough.

“I will be playing one more U23s game then I’m available for selection,” he explained.

“All I have wanted to do all season is help the team and I believe I can contribute a lot even with the few games left. I will do everything in my power to get into the team before the end of the season.”

Charlton U23s: Harvey, O'Connor, Mitchell, Barker (Kedwell 71), Chin, Agyemang, Henry, Forster-Caskey (Leaburn 46), Campbell, Williams (Santos 63), Kanu.

Subs (not used): Kone, Viggars.

Goals: Forster-Caskey 1, Henry (pen) 21

(Photo: Watford FC)

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