Diaby considered retirement during injury rehabilitation

The French midfielder spent 13 months on the sidelines with ruptured cruciate ligaments in his left knee.

Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby said he considered retirement during his lengthy recovery from a serious knee injury.

The Frenchman spent 13 months out of action with ruptured cruciate ligaments in his left knee, but was an unused substitute during Sunday's 1-0 win over West Brom. 

It was his first appearance in a squad since suffering the injury in training last year and the 27-year-old revealed he had considered giving up the game as he questioned his ability to return. 

However, with Diaby able to play a part in Arsenal's two remaining fixtures of the season, including the FA Cup final, the former Auxerre man is looking ahead to a positive campaign finale.  

"You ask yourself whether you're going to still be a footballer," he explained to L'Equipe. "You think of giving up everything. I said to myself: 'I'm sick of this, I'm quitting.' I spoke about it with my parents, my brothers, my sisters, my friends ... then, I got up one morning (and said): 'No, out of the question.'

"I had to start from scratch. But given where I'd been, it didn't really matter. It's been tough because I've had a lot of injuries. I'm religious, and in my belief, despair doesn't exist. You must never give in. Also, I'm only 27, soon 28. I still have five or six years ahead of me, perhaps more."