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Stoke City (H) Fri 26 Dec 2014, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Arteta Worth The Risk

@Everton

Mikel Arteta admits it was a risk playing against Blackburn but it was a decision that paid off.

The Spaniard hadn't featured for the Blues since scoring in the 2-0 at Manchester City on 24 March after suffering a groin problem.

In his pre-match press conference, David Moyes revealed the match at Ewood Park would come too soon for Arteta.

But the midfielder exclusively told evertonfc.com that he was willing to take a gamble.

"We did a scan before the game and it showed that my injury wasn't cleared completely but we said we need to take a risk," Arteta said.

"We took a risk to be honest, because they said I needed more time with being out but it was a really important game. 

"I knew if we won the game then we would be up for the challenge to get in Europe.  We are all so happy now we have the result."

The playmaker scored in the dramatic 3-2 win at Rovers, securing his fifth goal of the season from the penalty spot.

It's been twelve weeks since Arteta made his long awaited return from the serious knee injury that saw him miss 11 months.

The Spaniard says he felt no ill-effects from playing on Saturday and was relieved to play the full 90 minutes.

"I feel fine, we won the game and we had to take a chance,” he said.

"I think it was worth it and I felt ready. I have been training hard and I have been trying to keep myself fit."

Watch highlights of the 3-2 win at Blackburn now on evertontv - click here.

Get Arteta's goal sent direct to your phone!  Or why not get our exclusive Arteta animation on your mobile - click here.

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