Alex Gilbey says his fitness is returning in a hurry after a match-winning performance on his home Stevenage debut.

The on-loan midfielder scored three minutes into the second half as Stevenage beat Newport County 1-0 to maintain their second place in League Two.

He had only played once for parent club Charlton Athletic prior to his deadline day switch and his Boro debut at Crewe lasted a little more than an hour.

He got the full 90 though at the Lamex as the hard work put in during the 10-day gap between games paid instant dividends.

He said: "I loved [the home debut] but the most important thing was we got the three points.

"I should have scored in the first half so it was nice to see that hit the back of the net.

"I’ve still got more to come but I’m still finding my fitness.

"I did feel fitter than last week so I just need to keep working hard in training.

"I felt OK. I thought I’d be worse and I was starting to look at the scoreboard but then I got my second wind."

He appreciates he has come into a side that has confidence oozing out of every pore but says the welcome has been fantastic.

Gilbey said: "The lads have made it really easy, it’s a top group of lads, and the gaffer has made it easy as well.

"I’m just enjoying being back in the mix.

"We knew Newport would be a good side, they gave us a few problems on the counter.

"Bradford are a big club with a big stadium but if we keep performing like we are then we’ll be alright."

The manager was full of praise for the 27-year-old and the midfielder himself says the gaffer's pursuit of him made him feel wanted and sent Stevenage to the top of his list when it came to loan moves.

"He’s a top man," said Gilbey. "I had a call with him [in the window] and to be fair he wouldn’t get off the phone for about 45 minutes.

"He’s a really enthusiastic bloke and he just wants to win football matches and that’s why I am here.

"I’ve played against his sides in the past and I knew he was loud but I really like that.

"I knew how much he wanted me and when I came down to see him, and I spoke to [Alex Revell] about how the lads were, I knew I wanted to be a part of it.

"Thankfully I made the decision because I am loving it at the minute."