O'Shea: It's good to be back
John O'Shea has wedged his foot firmly back in Manchester United's first-team door again this season after last term's injury woe. Last November, the versatile defender suffered a dead leg in the Republic of Ireland's World Cup play-off exit against France. It initially looked to be a routine thigh problem but congealed blood in the muscle led to five months out and missing 31 games. The 29-year-old returned in the final weeks of the campaign and has been a mainstay this term. O'Shea knew he had to hit the ground running in August if he were to plant himself on the senior picture again. He has started in all Sir Alex Ferguson's XI's apart from when the Reds manager rotated his side against Rangers in the Champions League and went with his fringe players in the Carling Cup at Scunthorpe. I knew when I started the season that if I was playing I had to take my chance and really grasp it, John told M.E.N. Sport. Also I had to enjoy every minute of it because you know with the competition we have at the club it is a real battle to stay there. I haven't found it difficult at all after last season to get back into the swing of things. Once I got pre-season into me and played a lot of games on the tour of the US, plus matches in the season proper and then internationals as well, you soon get over being out so long. The key when you have been out with an injury, particularly long term like I was, is to play as many games as you can. Once you get five, six or seven games into it you are soon over your fatigue and I am well past that now. The tiredness soon goes once you get games under your belt. You have to prepare and get back mentally sharp and that returns quickly once you are into the fray. The key for me was that I actually got myself back fit towards the end of the season. I wasn't 100 per cent but I was close enough. Then I had to stay fit during pre-season. Once I was able to do that I felt great. I didn't do too much in the summer. I have always used the off season as a chance to recuperate. That applies even when you have been injured because believe me it is not a jolly up when you are coming back from injury. At United, we do a lot of hard work with the physios, so it really is tough going when you are returning from injury. You need your rest as much as when you have played all season! I did a little bit more work than usual in the summer but I still needed to rest a bit and get ready. I was in the team before I got injured and I have managed to force my way back now that I am fully fit and long may it continue. The reason why the club has been successful is that we have a fantastic squad and the manager will rotate and put people in and take ones out when needed. That will always be the case and we have to get used to it. But it has been good to start in the side. What is your verdict on O'Shea's form? Have your say.
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