Cauley Woodrow said it was ‘very frustrating’ to miss four matches with a hamstring injury during Barnsley’s battle against relegation. 

The 25-year-old, who is the Reds’ joint top-scorer, had been out since the end of last year but returned as a substitute for the last 35 minutes of Tuesday’s 3-0 home loss to Preston North End. Woodrow told the Chronicle: “It was very frustrating. It happened in training and it was the worst thing that can happen. It’s one of those things as a footaller. You have to focus on getting fit, help the team in different ways and support from the stands which I did and now I am back fit and looking forward to helping the lads on the pitch.

“I feel like I have 90 minutes in me for the next game. I was outside doing running five days after the injury so I haven’t lost much fitness. If the manager picks me, I will be ready.”

Woodrow, who has been linked with a move away from Oakwell this January, added: “It was a real injury, it wasn’t me pretending to be injured because I wanted a move. I haven’t thought about leaving.”

Barnsley visit Portsmouth tomorrow in the FA Cup, a competition in which Woodrow has five goals throughout his career. Last season he netted his first Barnsley goal in the 4-0 first round win over Notts County then added two more in the 4-2 success at Southend United.  He also scored twice for Fulham at Wolves in a 2015 win. 

Woodrow said: “It’s a special cup and I have had joy in it previously and hopefully that can continue on Saturday. Everyone wants to play in the FA Cup when you’re a kid, especially me. It’s another game of football that we want to win then, after a good result, we will look at the next league games.”

The midweek loss left the Reds four points adrift of safety in 22nd position in the Championship. Woodrow said: “It was a bit of a shock to us. We had been doing really well recently. The gaffer said to forget about it, we’ve been fantastic under him and put points on the board. We have a massive opportunity to stay up this season. It was just a bad day and we need to move on. “I am 100 per cent positive we will put it behind us at Portsmouth. We are a good team now and we’re playing really well.”

Woodrow was the top-scorer earlier in the season but has now been joined on nine league goals by in-form Conor Chaplin. He said: “It’s not a competition, it’s just about us staying up. Whoever is getting the goals doesn’t matter, even if it’s Sami (Radlinger) in goal. We have goals, we have assists, we have everything and the table doesn’t reflect how good a team we are and how we have played in the last few months.”