Aston Villa defender James Collins has spoken of his injury frustrations, saying he is desperate to get back into the line-up.
The 26-year-old has been struggling to shake off a groin injury which has hampered his game since early November.
Although he appears to be on the road to recovery, he has struggled to break back into the starting squad.
Boss Martin O'Neill appears none too keen to rush the Welshman back from his absence, instead opting to play Collins in the recent Carling Cup and FA Cup wins over Blackburn whilst looking elsewhere for Villa's Premier League encounters.
Desperate to play regular football again, Collins says it does help getting a run out in the Cup, especially against Premier League opposition.
"I'm still trying to get back to full fitness, but the game last night (against Blackburn in the Carling Cup) played a big part and now I'm in the team I will be looking to stay there," he said.
"The injury was obviously frustrating. I had a few when I was at West Ham. I seem to get on a run of games then pull up with an injury.
"Luckily this time it wasn't as bad as what I've had previously and I was back in a couple of weeks, and now I'm looking forward to get back into the form I was in before the injury."
Collins concedes that his quest to break into the starting line-up will be largely hindered by the quality football O'Neill's current string are producing week-in week-out.
"This squad is so hard to break into. It's superb," he said.
"It's happened to a few of the boys where they've been injured then dropped.
"I'm just here to take my chances and play as many games as I can."