Aaron Ramsey knows what it is like to have your development ruined by injury. So when the Welsh midfielder advises Jack Wilshere and Emmanuel Frimpong – themselves recovering from long-term layoffs – that it was a long but ultimately improving journey, it is worthwhile for them to listen.
Ramsey missed over a year for Arsenal after breaking his leg in 2010. He is now back playing again, and scored against Olympiakos on Wednesday night. And he had words of encouragement for Frimpong and Wilshere.
"They've been out for a while," Ramsey said. "I've experienced that and it's not a good thing. You get down, it feels like a long, long way back but they're close now and it'll be good to have competition to keep other players on their toes as well."
Ramsey believes that such a long spell out of the game, while painful, did help his off-field development. "Absolutely," he replied when asked if it had made him stronger. "I think I grew up a lot as a person while I was going through it. It does make you stronger and it's just getting over the mental side of it."
Wilshere played for Arsenal Under-21s on Monday at West Bromwich Albion for 62 minutes and is expected to feature again this Monday against Reading Under-21s at Barnet.
The striker Olivier Giroud has insisted he is relaxed despite scoring just once in his Arsenal career so far – in the Capital One Cup. "People tell me the goals are coming soon, don't worry, we trust you," he said, denying that he was under pressure. "So it is very important to me to feel the support of people and my team-mates too. I am confident, I don't worry about the future, the goals are coming."
Once Giroud scores his first in the Premier League, he believes the rest will follow. "When you score one, you take confidence and more trust, so you know it is like that. When you are a striker you need to score, but I am not worried about that."
Given Thierry Henry, Arsenal's greatest striker, did not score until his ninth appearance, Giroud is relaxed. "I need some time to get confident and to keep going," he insisted. "Thierry Henry, he scored only in his ninth game, so it is a good example. For strikers it is difficult to adapt to the Premier League, so it is always close to scoring the goals, so I continue to keep confident."
- More about: