Wenger praises Diaby mental strength

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has praised the determination of midfielder Abou Diaby, who continues to suffer from a succession of injuries, the Daily Star has reported.

The 28-year-old has been at Arsenal since January 2006, but has been limited to 180 appearances in that time after sustaining over 40 injuries. He returned to contention just weeks ago following a long-term absence, but will miss Saturday’s trip to Sunderland because of a calf strain.

Diaby has continually spoken of his hope of putting all his injury concerns behind him and re-establishing himself as a key member of the Gunners midfield. His last run in the starting XI came early in the 2012-13 season, so the manner in which he has battled to regain fitness has left Wenger full of admiration for his compatriot.

During the press conference ahead of the game at the Stadium of Light, he said: “You wonder where Abou gets the strength back to come back and work harder and harder and harder. When you come in in the morning he’s already in the gym to prepare. He has done extremely well – you cannot fault his attitude at all.

“You can only admire him for that. He’s not had the luck. He is always in my mind. His first injury at Sunderland in the last minute – I think that was a huge blow in his career.”

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