Northern Ireland star Paddy McNair admits he was delighted to finally get back on the pitch for Sunderland after 10 months out with injury.
The Ballyclare native played the first 45 minutes of the Black Cats Under-23s 2-0 win over Hertha Berlin at the Stadium of Light on Tuesday night.
McNair made his mark, too, netting the opener in the Premier League International Cup clash.
He admits he could not have hoped for a better return to action.
"It’s been a long ten months so to get over the white line again was really good," the 22-year-old the Sunderland Echo.
"Playing football is what I love to do and when it’s taken away from you it’s not nice, so it’s great to be back.
"It was even better to get a goal because everyone likes scoring and now I just want to get back and help the team.
"The Stadium of Light is a great place to play so hopefully in a few weeks I’m back playing in front of a full house with the first team."