Hughes back in business

PUBLISHED: 12:15 29 September 2009 | UPDATED: 16:33 10 September 2010

Hughes is expected to keep his place for Norwich City's League One game against Leyton Orient at Carrow Road.

Hughes is expected to keep his place for Norwich City's League One game against Leyton Orient at Carrow Road.

David Cuffley

Stephen Hughes will put his best foot forward for Norwich City tonight after making a surprisingly swift return to action at the weekend. The Scottish midfielder, stretchered off at Milton Keynes just a fortnight ago, was summoned from the bench six minutes before half-time in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Gillingham.

Stephen Hughes will put his best foot forward for Norwich City tonight after making a surprisingly swift return to action at the weekend.

The Scottish midfielder, stretchered off at Milton Keynes just a fortnight ago, was summoned from the bench six minutes before half-time in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Gillingham after the Canaries, already down to 10 men through the sending-off of goalkeeper Fraser Forster, were forced to reshuffle their line-up following full-back Jon Otsemobor's exit with a hamstring injury.

Now 26-year-old Hughes is expected to keep his place for tonight's League One game against Leyton Orient at Carrow Road (7.45pm).

"It's getting there. I missed the game against Charlton but I managed to play 50-odd minutes on Saturday, so the fitness is fine," he said.

"I'm feeling good. I played a bit on Saturday so I'm looking forward and hope I can play my part tonight as well."

Hughes suffered a damaged nerve in his foot when he was upended by ex-Canary Luke Chadwick early in the 2-1 defeat by MK Dons, but was back in light training before the end of last week.

He said: "I think it was just the way the guy caught me. He hit the nerve and I lost a wee bit of feeling, but thankfully that's OK now and I only missed the one game. It probably could have been a lot worse. I'll just play on now and put that behind me."

After playing his part in 10-man City's fightback from 1-0 down, Hughes paid tribute to the spirit in the dressing room.

He said: "After we went down to 10 men I thought we showed good resilience and character to get back in the game and we were unlucky at the death - we could have sneaked it.

"We've shown we don't throw the towel in, we keep going right to the end and I think we've been unlucky in some games.

"Tonight should be a good game for us, a chance to get the crowd behind us and get the three points."

Manager Paul Lambert admitted he was asking a lot from Hughes after 10 days without training.

He said: "All you can do is get the best out of him at the minute because he hasn't trained, or had much in pre-season, let alone anything else. Even him coming in on Saturday was great. It was a big, big effort."

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