Jamie Carragher hopes injury has made him stronger

Liverpool vice-captain Jamie Carragher is hopeful his two-month injury lay-off will allow him to finish the season stronger.

The centre-back celebrated his 33rd birthday in January on the sidelines as he recuperated from an operation on a shoulder dislocated at Tottenham in late November.

However, he returned to action three and a half weeks early in February's victory at Chelsea and has played four of the last five matches.

And while Carragher admits his spell out of the team at one of the busiest times of the year was frustrating he has tried to turn his absence into a plus point.

"You have to look at the positives of an injury in that it gives you a rest and takes you out of the firing line," Carragher told Press Association Sport.

"Maybe you can look back and say 'It's done me good' - but I'd much rather be playing because I love being in the firing line.

"You don't want to be out but sometimes you try to put a silver lining on it and try to kid yourself in your own head because you are devastated when you get injured.

"Any injury comes at a bad time but there were a lot of games when I was injured because it was over Christmas.

"But it has happened now. I have been very lucky with injuries throughout my career and hopefully there won't be too many more.

"Maybe the rest will prove between now and the end of the season that it has helped me."

As the oldest player in Kenny Dalglish's first-team squad, Carragher is aware more than most his days at the highest level are numbered.

But he is keen to carry on playing as long as possible and he pays close attention to his personal fitness.

"You get more mature and have an understanding of how your body works and it is a short career so you have to maximise it as much as possible," he added.

"Fitness was drummed into me when I was growing up and as you get older that becomes more apparent and you have to look after yourself.

"Once you reach 30 people start questioning your fitness or whether you have lost your ability and teams start looking for younger players so you have to look at the fitness side of it."

Carragher's determination to return swiftly helped his speedy recovery, although his surgeon Peter Brownson had to rein him in on occasions.

"The way the medical science side of the game is going now everything is a race to get back as quickly as possible because you want to be on the pitch," said the centre-back.

"When you are playing football you have targets and games to think about but when you are injured you lose that and your focus becomes getting back as quick as possible, that becomes your target.

"It was my nature to push to come back but there was no way Mr Brownson would not have let me come back if it had not been right."

Carragher returned to the £200,000 Bone and Joint Centre at Spire Liverpool Hospital, where he was treated for his recent injury, to officially open the unit last night.

The defender was also presented with a cheque for £3,000 for his 23 Foundation which raises money to benefit the local community.



Voices
voices
News
general electionThis quiz matches undecided voters with the best party for them
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen starred in the big screen adaptation of Austen's novel in 2005
tvStar says studios are forcing actors to get buff for period roles
News
science
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before