Scott Vernon hoping to get another chance against WycombeStriker Scott Vernon says he's determined to play a key role in Shrewsbury Town's second half of the season as Micky Mellon's men prepare for Sunday's mouthwatering top-of-the-table clash with Wycombe Wanderers at the Greenhous Meadow.
Town climbed to the summit of League 2 following Boxing Day's 2-0 win at Oxford with Vernon recalled to the starting XI for the first time since early October.
Shrewsbury lead the table on goal difference and face the teams directly below them in the next three games - Wycombe, Burton and Luton.
"It's been a great first half of the season but we're not resting on our laurels," said Vernon, whose only goal in blue-and-amber so far came against former club Blackpool in the opening week of the season in the League Cup.
"We'll keep looking to strive for better and improve all the time. Personally I'd have liked to have played more games but I'm determined to stay in the team now. I had a good pre-season scoring goals and in the first week opened my account. Things changed from there and I've got to look forward rather than back and try to stay in the team.
"It's been a frustrating few months. I just want to play football and I've been itching to get involved. I really enjoyed it against Oxford. It was great being part of it and back with the lads.
"I'm not one of those who sulks about. It's a case of getting my head down and working hard. That's how I've always been and that's how I'll always be. There are times when you feel like the world is against you but you crack on and try to keep the fitness levels up."
Vernon had a hand in the opening goal for Town at Oxford, laying the ball to James Collins who finished off his 11th of the season. Defender Mark Ellis then headed in a second as Shrewsbury opened up a two-goal lead inside the opening 18 minutes.
"It felt fairly comfortable out there," said Vernon. "We got the goals in the first half and saw the game out. The second half was a scrappy affair, the conditions changed dramatically with the wind picking up and the rain coming down. It made the pitch more boggy and it wasn't the best spectacle. It was a great away performance though."
Town had other chances to extend their lead but after Mellon's side gave away a 2 goal lead at Exeter to lose at St James' Park in November, Shrewsbury were determined to see out the match.
"We spoke about the Exeter game at half time," revealed Vernon. "We were warned about it and it shows we've learnt since then. I'm sure if the situation arose again we'd do the same. You have to learn from those mistakes which I feel we have done and that will stand us in good stead for the remainder of the season."
Town return to the Greenhous Meadow on Sunday with 10 home wins from 11 this season and Vernon is hoping that outstanding form will continue against second placed Wycombe.
"It's a top of the table clash and one where we'll be looking to extend our home record," said Vernon. "If we do that, we'll still be top of the league. We know that if we have an off day we'll get beaten but we've got a professional bunch of lads in there who will everything right, listen and want to do well. At 31, I'm the second oldest in the squad which is quite embarrassing! We're all willing to learn and I'm sure we'll keep improving."