Scottish Premier League

Langfield puts past behind him

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Fri, 16 Nov 2012 18:44:00

Liverpool have been given a major boost with the news that midfielder Lucas Leiva is back in training following a lengthy injury lay-off.

The Brazilian has been out since the end of August, when he picked up a thigh injury in the 2-2 draw with Manchester City.

Lucas is not fit enough to make the squad for Saturday's Premier League visit of Wigan but could figure in the Europe League clash with Young Boys next Thursday.

The 25-year-old said on Twitter: "Happy to be back and feeling good", before adding: "I hope I will be available soon."

Lucas has had a bad run with injuries, missing the majority of last season after damaging his anterior cruciate ligament.

During his latest spell on the sidelines, Liverpool have slumped to 13th in the Premier League.

The midfielder earned his first cap as a late substitute as interim national team boss Billy Stark secured a 2-1 win in Luxembourg on Wednesday night.

Davidson's appearance may have lasted only a few minutes but was the first time a Saints player had represented Scotland for 80 years.

He told the SPL's official YouTube channel: "I'm delighted to get the cap. There has been a lot of support from St Johnstone - the fans, the players and people working here - so I'm thrilled.

"Eighty years is a long time and it makes you feel proud. Fingers crossed I can do it again."

Saints boss Steve Lomas said: "It's great for Murray to get a little taste of it.

"It's a reward for all the hard work he's put in since he came here from Livingston as a midfield enforcer.

"We think there's still a lot more to come from Murray.

"We want him to be a goalscoring midfielder, it's something we have asked him to try to improve and he's trying to do that.

"It's great for him and it's decent that Billy Stark has looked at clubs like Inverness and ourselves.

"It's reward for players doing well. It's given Murray a taste and that's the carrot - if he works hard, the Scotland manager is looking."

Saints secured an impressive 1-1 draw against Celtic last week and are hoping for maximum points when Ross County come calling in the SPL on Saturday.

Lomas has been impressed by Derek Adams' men so far in their season in the top flight.

He said: "All credit to Derek and his team, they've done very well. They've come up and been very competitive.

"They are very well organised and they've got good team spirit. That - with a few decent players - can hurt you.

"But we're at home and we want to get three points and we'll be aiming to do that."

Langfield was this week given the all-clear from doctors 18 months after suffering a brain seizure, which kept him out of the first team for the majority of last season.

The 32-year-old has been an ever-present this season and could celebrate his news by helping Aberdeen go top of the SPL tomorrow lunchtime, if they beat Celtic at Pittodrie.

"It was a massive relief off my shoulders," Langfield said. "I am so happy the worry has finally gone. It is a good thing for my family as well.

"The support I have had from the fans has been amazing. I had a lot of good luck messages from fans throughout Scotland, but the Aberdeen fans have been brilliant and I cannot thank them enough.

"Their messages got me through some dark times. I am just glad I have got through it."

Langfield believes his ordeal has furnished him with a more relaxed approach to football.

"I don't look to the future as much now," he said. "I take every game as it comes.

"I am really enjoying my football. I am really enjoying being at the club. We have a great bunch of lads in the dressing room. Coming into work every day is very enjoyable.

"With my health scare now behind me I can now enjoy my football even more. What happened certainly puts things into perspective.

"I don't think I have ever enjoyed my football as much.

"It has always been in the back of my mind that something might be wrong with my head. Now I know there's nothing wrong with me it gives me another boost."

Aberdeen's form is another major reason for Langfield's positive mental health.

The Dons have only lost once since their opening day defeat at Celtic Park.

Langfield was at fault for Kris Commons' winner but manager Craig Brown stuck by him and has been rewarded for his faith with a string of impressive displays, including six clean sheets.

"It is nice to be here sitting talking about a top-of-the-table clash," he said.

"For the past few seasons we have been down the other end of the table.

"We are where we want to be, challenging for European places. In the league we are looking down now and not looking up which is a massive difference.

"As long as we keep doing that we will be happy but no one is getting carried away."

Meanwhile, 17-year-old striker Cammy Smith has signed a new contract that ties him to Aberdeen until summer 2015.

Smith made his first-team debut at Inverness in April and scored his first goal for the club at the same venue this season.

Smith told the club's official website: "It was always my first choice to stay here at Pittodrie.

"I am an Aberdeen fan and I'm very excited about the next couple of years at the club, especially with the number of talented young boys who are making their way into the first-team squad.

"I'm really enjoying my football and felt there was no better place for me to continue my development."

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