Zullo: How to win back your spot after injury

Returning from injury is always a tricky time for any footballer, no matter which level you play. Socceroo Michael Zullo has had his fair share of bad luck with injuries so he’s qualified to provide advice on how best to recover and return to action.

Back in your rehab

“Coming back from injury is a challenging time. You want to do well, you want to do your role, but in the back of your mind you’re still thinking about your body and how it’s reacting.

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"You have to black that out and have faith in your own body and know you’ve done the right rehab with the medical staff.”

Don’t rush back

“It is always frustrating when you’re coming back from injury because you want to push yourself further than your body is ready for. 

“Usually those extra rest days are better for you, rather than pushing it too hard and re-doing the injury, as tempting as it is to train hard in a bid to impress the coach to win back your spot.”

If you’re frozen out, stay positive

“That’s never a good situation. You see it happen a lot in football and you always think it’ll never happen to you. 

“When it does - it’s easier said than done - but you need to essentially keep training hard, to make sure if something happens, someone gets injured, or your competition in the team has some poor form, then you’re ready to take your chance because you might not get one for a while.

“The main thing is to keep training hard but that’s never easy. You need to find a way to stay motivated, such as proving a point.”

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