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The Gunners midfielder made just four Premier League appearances as a substitute last season and has now revealed that his mounting injuries began to take a mental toll

Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby has revealed that he lived in fear of injuries during a frustrating 2011-12 Premier League campaign.

The Frenchman has started the new season in fine form, helping the Gunners take five points from their opening three fixtures without conceding a goal.

However, the 26-year-old made just four appearances in the English top flight last term, all as a substitute, due to a number of injury concerns and he has admitted his struggles took a mental toll.

Diaby told Le Parisien: "Last season, before the Fulham game, I was shaking on the bench because I was scared of getting injured again. It was incredible.

GUNNING DOWN THE SAINTS
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"All I wanted was to play again. I am born with a strong temper. I never give up. Maybe some people would have given up in my position, but it was out of the question for me.

"I had some very difficult moments, some days when I was depressed when it was tough, but even then, I always kept faith. I always told myself that some people were in a worse position than me."

Following an impressive start to his return to action, the Paris-born midfielder has expressed his hope that he can continue to flourish.

"It is such an important season for me that I am working harder than ever to succeed," he added. "I want to prove to myself that I can go higher.

"I am getting to an age and to a time in my career where I need to show what I can do on the pitch in the long term."

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