ANDRE Boucaud is glad to be back in the Notts County team – and he has vowed to stay there.
The 28-year-old midfielder has had mixed fortunes so far this season.
While he has spent most of it on the subs' bench at club level, he has been first choice at international level for Trinidad & Tobago.
After a great first season at Meadow Lane in 2012/13, he was called up by his country for the CONCACAF Gold Cup in America during the summer and helped them reach the quarter-finals of the competition.
He then scored his first international goal in a tournament in Saudi Arabia earlier this month, but bizarrely still found himself warming the bench on his return to Notts until the last two games.
He was finally thrown back into the Magpies' midfield at Leyton Orient and then made his first home league start of the season against Tranmere Rovers, helping Notts win their first game of the season in League One.
He now looks set to keep his place against Carlisle United at Brunton Park today (3pm) – and he admits being dropped to the bench was hard to take.
"It's very difficult because it came off a good season last season and getting called up for Trinidad to go to the Gold Cup was a great achievement for myself," he said. "Coming back here and not playing was very disappointing.
"But when I get my opportunity I know what I can do and I know I'm good enough so I've just had to wait.
"Right now I'm in the team and I want to stay in there.
"I think I've done well, but I have to continue that and hopefully help the team get some more wins."
The Magpies beat Tranmere 2-0 in front of their own fans, with goals from Joss Labadie and on-loan striker Marcus Haber.
It really was a must-win game for them because they lost six of their first seven league games and were rock bottom of the table with just one point.
And they went out and produced their best performance of the season to climb off the bottom of the table and lift the gloom at the club.
Boucaud says they must build on that victory now at Carlisle, who have won their last two games against Sheffield United and Stevenage to climb up to 15th place after sacking their long-serving manager Gregg Abbott.
"I just believe everyone has got to be confident and go into the game and hopefully get a win," he said.
It is unlikely Notts boss Chris Kiwomya will make any changes for the trip north, after finally finding a winning formula, so Boucaud is likely to start in a three-man midfield alongside Labadie, who scored against Tranmere, and new-signing Mark Fotheringham.
And he thinks they can work well together, after impressing against Tranmere.
"We didn't perform well by luck," he said.
"Hopefully we can build a partnership and get some more good results."
The Magpies will have good memories of playing at Carlisle because they claimed their biggest win of the season there last season – Jeff Hughes, Neal Bishop, Francois Zoko and Jamal Campbell-Ryce firing them to a 4-0 triumph.
Boucaud played in that game and while he would love a repeat scoreline he does not think that result last October will have any bearing on the latest encounter between the two clubs.
"This is a new season and we've got a lot of new players," he said.
"We've just got to go there as this group now and prove we can get a result.
"I know we won 4-0, but it's a new team and new players and they must have a new team as well.
"We've got to go there and try to get the three points."
And he insists there is no way the Notts players will suddenly become complacent after their first league win because they are still only in 23rd place.
"We can't get carried away, we're sitting second from bottom in the table," he said.
"There's nothing to get carried away about.
"We're underachieving as a team.
"We have just got to build on that win and hopefully get another win."