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Ilesanmi’s happy to be back involved at Daggers and plans to stay put

PUBLISHED: 09:00 20 December 2013

Dagenham & Redbridge defender Femi Ilesanmi. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO

Dagenham & Redbridge defender Femi Ilesanmi. Pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO

Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football Leagu

Dagenham & Redbridge defender Femi Ilesanmi feels his head is now in the right place, and the Daggers are reaping the rewards.

The 22-year-old had a spell out of the team as youngster Jack Connors thrived at left back and subsequently earned a new two-year contract extension at Victoria Road earlier in the season

But Ilesanmi snapped up his opportunity against Peterborough United in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and hasn’t looked back since.

And while he feels it’s part of his role to help his younger team-mate, Ilesanmi only has eyes on making that left back spot his own once again.

“Everything is about timing and the gaffer has spoken to me and has brought me in at the right time,” said Ilesanmi, who has made 118 appearances for the Daggers.

“My head is in the right place now and I’m ready to play. I am just happy that I am back playing again and I can concentrate on doing the best for my team and to make sure I don’t come out of it again.

“Jack has come in and done very well, but I talk to him a lot and give him some advice because I am older, but at the end of the day it’s competition, now I have my spot I am not coming out of the team.”

Saturday’s home game against Torquay United comes before a tough Christmas period of away fixtures at Portsmouth and high-flying Chesterfield.

And despite seeing his side lose out to League Two table-toppers Oxford United last weekend, Ilesanmi is happy the tight nature of the league can see them bounce straight back up the table with a welcome three points against the Gulls.

“The good thing about the league this year is that it’s so tight. We aren’t too far away, just seven points off the top and it’s good that we are in that shape going into the Christmas period.

“The important thing is that we’ve got to react. If we can have a good set of results over this period then we will find ourselves back up there.

“On paper it is a tough period for us, but all the lads are up for it and are looking forward to playing at Fratton Park and Chesterfield. We have just got to go out there and enjoy it.

“There’s no pressure, if we go out there and do what we are capable of I have got absolutely no doubts that we can get results from those places.”

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