Tom Cleverley described his return to action as "brilliant" after he featured for Watford Under 23s on Monday as they drew 2-2 with Ipswich Town.

Also involved were new signing Ignacio Pussetto, Tom Dele-Bashiru and Joao Pedro who scored his first goal in a Hornets shirt since arriving from Fluminense as the Hornets look to get some game time to some of their fringe players.

Allan Viral's goal opened the scoring for the Tractor Boys, but Pedro's strike, assisted by Pussetto, restored parity.

Viral put Ipswich ahead again in the second-half, but Sam Dalby levelled the scores soon after and the game remained level until the end.

Following the match, Cleverley told the club website he is now aiming to make a contribution to Watford's push for Premier League survival.

"I've not worked as hard as I have to not contribute towards the team," he said. "That's the plan."

Hornets coach Hayden Mullins was in tow with the Under 23s to watch on as the first-team players got some important match experience, something which Cleverley claims cannot be replicated in training.

The former Manchester United and Everton man has been out of action since October when he limped out of a game with Bournemouth and he said he was pleased with how he got on.

“It was the same of sort of rehab process as last time when I played 45 minutes for the 23s," he said.

"It's important to get that spatial awareness and that match competitiveness even though it's not in the first team. There is nothing like being part of a match situation where you can put in your tackles, put your passes in and put 100 per cent on everything. I'm really pleased."

After watching Watford drop a third consecutive lead in the Premier League at Brighton on Saturday, Cleverley is looking forward to getting onto the pitch rather than being in the stands.

However, he is under no illusions about how much work there is to do, despite things looking much more positive than when he last played for the first-team.

“I'm not the best watcher and there have been a few of us at the back there all twitching and getting up and down off our seats,” he said.

“But it's a much more positive side to come back into it. As the head coach keeps saying, we've just got to focus on ourselves and, as long we do our jobs, we can hold our heads high. We are where we are for a reason and it's not a time to start looking at our squad on paper. It's time to get out there and put in performances.”