The 26-year-old Australian midfielder made his first appearances since March this week as he played in the Championship for the first time. He claims he has been fit for more than a month but previous head coach Daniel Stendel had refused to pick him.
He said: “Whenever you’re not in the squad, injured or not picked, it is frustrating – especially when the team is bottom of the league and it’s not going well. But I have got myself fit now and I just want to help us get up the league. I am a natural leader so hopefully I can help in that way. The boys are all leaders but it’s difficult when times are tough because everyone looks at their own games.”
Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Swansea City was Dougall’s first game since fracturing his leg in Doncaster in March. He said: “It’s been 218 days. I felt good out there. “The sport scientists and physios have got me fit. I was tired at the end but overall I was just buzzing to be back.”
Dougall played the defensive midfield role in the 3-5-2 formation which Murray changed to this week. He said: “It suits us perfectly. We worked on it for a couple of weeks in the international break. We are comfortable and know our roles.”
Dougall praised the impact of caretaker Adam Murray, saying: “He’s brought great enthusiasm and I can’t say a bad word about him. “The last few weeks have been really positive in training and the lads are starting to gel. “It’s difficult circumstances whenever a manager goes. But everyone’s position is up for grabs and the intensity in training has lifted.”