Chelsea star Callum Hudson-Odoi has, on Saturday, provided an insight into the injury hell which he was forced to endure this past season.
Wide-man Hudson-Odoi, of course, endured another campaign to forget last time out.
This came as a combination of a fresh round of fitness concerns, and competition for places in the attacking third, culminated in the English international being afforded a paltry 11 Premier League starts.
Hudson-Odoi, in turn, has become something of a forgotten man in Chelsea’s setup, no doubt desperate for a bounce-back term next time out.
Speaking in an interview with the Blues’ official website, it therefore came as little surprise when the 21-year-old, this weekend, was drawn on his efforts to improve with a view to 2022/23.
And CHO went on to highlight a specific focus on strength training in pre-season, in explaining:
‘My main goal this summer and throughout the season is to be stronger. There were times in the season last year when I was running with the ball and feeling like I could get barged off it or I’m not as strong as I thought I was.
‘I’ve been putting more muscle on in training to make sure I’m getting bigger so when the opponents come, I know that I’m strong enough to hold them off, or that I won’t get barged and I can barge them instead.’
Perhaps even more interesting, though, was the talented attacker providing an insight into the exact nature of his most recent injury woes.
‘It was a weird one. It was a neurological thing where I had a tweaked nerve in my back and it stemmed all the way down through my body, so it then became difficult for me to retain muscle,’ Hudson-Odoi began. ‘There was no power really in my legs and everything was like ‘woah’. I was trying to pass the ball 10 yards but I had no power and I couldn’t even do it.
‘I think it was also a post-coronavirus thing from December, which I couldn’t believe because it had been such a long time before. The issue started with my Achilles and then I was trying to use other parts of my body to make up for it, so for example when I was running I wasn’t running on my toes as much because my Achilles power wasn’t that strong.
‘I was trying to find another way to run and then it started affecting my back but all of it is good now. My Achilles is strong again and my back is strong so everything is perfect. It’s one of those things but I’m glad to be back and to have all my power, strength and speed back is all that I can wish for.’
Hudson Odoi: “I’ve been putting more muscle on in training to make sure I’m getting bigger so when the opponents come, I know that I’m strong enough to hold them off, or that I won’t get barged and I can barge them instead.” [chelseafc] #cfc https://t.co/VMp8lsOma1
— CFCDaily (@CFCDaily) July 9, 2022