However, he missed January onwards because of a groin problem and has not made a single appearance for the first team since the win at Cambridge, although he has been an unused sub a few times this season.
Many wondered why Riley wasn't in the team when Notts took on Southport, with Kevin Nicholson out injured and Ian Baraclough not 100% fit, Dearden opted to play right back Simon Ramsden at left back and left Riley on the bench.
"Paul will be the first to admit that this year he has gone off the boil a little bit, and people who have seen the reserve games will know he is not doing as well as he can be doing to get in the first team." Said Dearden.
"But I have doubt, with his enthusiasm and his play he will come again, he is a young lad and needs to get his form back he had last year. I have nothing against Paul, which he can't put right himself."