SEAN McConville is relieved to put 10 months of "torture" behind him after helping Accrington Stanley to victory in his comeback game.

The Reds playmaker had not kicked a competitive ball since suffering an Achilles injury on New Year's Day, and he admitted the road back to the first team had been a difficult one both mentally and physically.

But after coming off the bench at half-time to help the Reds to a 1-0 win over Fleetwood Town on Tuesday night, his next aims are to get back in the starting line-up and keep Stanley at the top end of the League One table.

“It was a surreal moment to be honest. I didn’t expect to be coming on at half-time, the plan was to ease me back in with 20 minutes. But fair play to Fleetwood, they were on top in the first half and the manager felt like he needed to change it," said McConville.

“I was a bit surprised when he told me to get warmed up but it is what it is. I’ve been around the game a long time and there’s no easing back in at this level. It’s straight back in at the deep end against a good team.

“To come on and get the win makes that 10 months of torture, hard work (worth it). Every negative emotion that you can go through I probably went through.

“It was horrible. It was torture. I’ve never suffered a long-term injury and it was emotional.

“There are so many people that I need to thank that have kept my spirits up during it because there were some dark days. You’re bed bound for the first few weeks, you can’t move, then when you’re not bed bound you’re starting to walk. You literally can’t step up on your toes. You’re frustrated watching games of football. Then once you start getting back sort of walking and fit you’re in a gym, you’re seeing four walls in a gym.

"The physios… I must have done their head in. They must hate me here because I was just bugging them every single day. In the gym, watching the lads train, it’s been torture.

"The fans have been a massive part of me being in that gym wanting to come back. It’s a shame that they’re not here to see me play and to witness my comeback because I get that many well wishes it’s remarkable."

He added: "I’ve got so many people to thank along the way, none more so than their (Fleetwood's) manager (Joey Barton), he was one of the first to text me when I did my Achilles saying get well soon, and any help he could give.

“Other managers up and down the country were the same.

“It’s just a proud moment for me and my family to even be back on the pitch and back from such a tough injury.

“I just want to kick on and start playing as many games as I can and get back to the form that I was showing before my injury.

"It's been horrible. It’s been an injury that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy but I’m over it now and hopefully I can kick on and help the lads get as many points as we can from now to the end of the season."