Last Updated: Tue, 20 Mar 2012 13:48
Shane Long hopes to play a leading role with West Brom during the final two months of the season to ensure he is ready for Euro 2012.
The Republic of Ireland striker was sidelined with a back problem and his well documented heart scare and then unable to dislodge Marc-Antoine Fortune from the side when back to fitness.
Long had been one of West Brom's most improved players before his catalogue of injury problems, but with Roy Hodgson's men having been firing on all cylinders recently he has had to be content with a place on the bench.
With Euro 2012 less than four months away the Republic of Ireland striker is desperate to get back in the first team in order to solidify his position in Giovanni Trapattoni's squad.
Long was given a rare start in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Wigan and hopes to feature more prominently in the final nine games.
He said: "I would rather be starting every single game. I want to get into form before the Euros in the summer and there are nine games left to do that.
"But there are 25 players in the squad who will also say they want to be starting and Marc has been brilliant when in the team.
"The gaffer gave me a chance at Wigan and hopefully I'll be involved again this weekend (against Newcastle) - hopefully from the start."
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