SAINTS coach MarkWotte believes Morgan Schneiderlin is ready for first team contention again.

Schneiderlin gifted Brighton the winner in Saints reserves’ Combination Central Division clash at Staplewood last night, his first match since suffering a hamstring injury three and a half weeks ago.

The 18-year-old midfielder lost possession on the edge of the penalty area and Brighton striker Jake Robinson punished him by curling in the only goal of the night to end Saints’ run of four successive Combination wins.

Schneiderlin was hauled off at half-time.

But Wotte believes the Frenchman will be considered by Jan Poortvliet ahead of the trip to Swansea City on Saturday.

He said: “Morgan was unlucky to lose the ball just 20 yards from the goal and they punished us for that. One mistake was deadly so that should be a lesson for Morgan. You cannot be unconcentrated and lose the ball very close to your own goal with a square pass in the Championship or in the reserve league. But I’m happy he made that mistake here and not on Saturday!

“He needs some good training sessions but is physically ready to make the step up to the first team. He is close from what I saw and it’s up to Jan to decide for Saturday.”

Schneiderlin started in midfield alongside Jason Euell, who was playing his first game since suffering a dislocated shoulder in the reserves’ last defeat, against Bristol City nearly two months ago.

French midfielder Romain Gasmi, a former teammate of Schneiderlin at RC Strasbourg, made his first Saints appearance when he replaced Euell for the last 20 minutes following his recovery from a broken foot.