Reed on the road to recovery
Daggers striker targets more first team action, after making his comeback against Millwall at the weekend
While Brian Woodall has been thriving in the first team of late, his flat-mate Jake Reed has endured a frustrating period on the sidelines.
The pair were snapped up from non-league football in the summer, but while Woodall has remained injury free and established himself as a vital part of the Daggers squad, Reed is one of several players to have spent more time in the treatment room than on the pitch.
The 20-year-old has had a frustrating season with several injury setbacks preventing him from reaching peak fitness.
But after Reed played 90 minutes in Daggers Essex Senior Cup quarter-final victory over Brightlingsea Regent last Tuesday, the young striker was a surprise inclusion on the bench against Millwall.
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Reed has played just 11 minutes of first team football – in a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy tie with Southend – since early September.
But with a walking wounded bench of substitutes to choose from, manager John Still threw Reed back into the action midway through the second half against Millwall, to the striker’s delight.
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“I’ve been injured for so long, so I’ll take anything, I just want to be involved,” he said.
“I felt really sharp on Saturday and really fit. I just wanted to get on the pitch and get some minutes in.
“I was getting a bit down at first; I was out for quite a while. I’d get back to fitness and then get injured again, so my head went a little bit, but I’m back now and hopefully I can get fit. I’m not fully fit yet, but I’m getting closer every week.”
Manager Still recently revealed he has high hopes for Reed, who looked lively against Millwall and determined to make the most of a rare chance to impress.
As he continues to regain his fitness following a series of ankle injuries, the former Great Yarmouth Town forward is taking nothing for granted, but hopes to get a few more appearances under his belt and help fire Daggers away from the relegation zone.
“I want to get a few more appearances and maybe notch a few goals, which I feel I can do, I’ve just got to work really hard,” he added.
“I’d rather get the league results at the moment than the FA Cup. I’m not too fussed about that. The Cup is just a bonus.”