STEVE Flitcroft has got a new lease of life since he has secured a first team spot at Accrington Stanley.
The former Blackburn Rovers trainee has starred in Stanley's last two games playing well in his first full Reds game of the season against Oldham in the LDV Vans defeat and then playing a prominent role in the goalless draw against Exeter.
It is a far cry from the days when he was loaned out to Barrow in August and was wondering if he had a future with the Reds.
"I didn't really want to go out on loan as we had just turned full-time, it was early in the season and I had wanted to give Accrington a good go.
"But Coley told me to go and play a few games as he needed me to be fit and ready in case there were injuries or suspensions at Accrington.
"It turned out okay as Smudger (Jonathan Smith) and Ian Kilford, who lives in Preston, were also travelling up there so we went together. They are a good set of lads and I was there for two months and played a lot of games. I enjoyed it."
He also scored a wonder goal there when Barrow won 1-0 against Bradford Park Avenue.
"It was a volley from the edge of the box. A top strike!" he said.
The Bluebirds manager did want Flitcroft to sign permanently but he still wanted to give the Interlink his best shot.
"I turned them down as I hadn't even had a game for Accrington," he said. "I just wanted to at least have a chance and say I done everything I could at Accrington.
"But saying that, going to Barrow worked out well for me in that I got to play regular, competitive games where we were battling for results and I think that was better than staying and playing reserve games for Accrington."
Then he got his first team recall for the Oldham match when the manager made changes following the shock loss to Leigh in the FA Cup.
"Coley told me on the morning of the game in training that I was going to start so I had managed to get my head round it.
"It was a good place to have your first game as it is a good stadium and there were more than 3,000 people watching. And I felt I did okay."
The 23-year-old did more than okay, playing out on the right and had a big part in a solid performance despite Accrington's defeat.
He kept his place for the Exeter Conference clash and once again made himself a nuisance for the opposition despite the Reds not making the breakthrough.
"I do prefer to play in the centre of midfield than on the wing but I have got to play wherever I am told to get a game.
"I now need to try and keep my place in the team but I know I can do a job. It is horrible watching, especially when things aren't going well, so it is good that now I have got my chance to show what I can do."
Flitcroft admits full-time training has been a big boost for him. The last time he was full-time was at Ewood Park but he says he is feeling the benefits of all the hard work which has been put in at Accrington over the past few months.
"It is a good set up and the training has been good - it has made a difference," he said. "I feel a lot fitter and I have noticed the difference in that we work a lot more on set-pieces and formations."
And Flitcroft hopes he can keep his place tomorrow as Stanley face strugglers Northwich.
"We always seem to draw against them. It is a big game for us. They have started to pick up, despite having a ten point deduction. We should beat them and we have got to be up for it.
"I have got to hope I start, keep playing well and setting up goals and hold down a regular spot."
Manager Coleman said: "Steven has done well since he has come back in. I tried not to put too much pressure on him when he came back.
"But it is a big period for him as this could make or break his career at Accrington. Steve has waited for his chance and has taken it to a certain extent. He has got to keep taking it now."