On the 27th February 2010, Aaron Ramsey suffered a horrific broken leg so unpleasant, everyone who witnessed it was struck into an unnerving focus. These things happen in football, and although the tackle was mistimed and over-the-top, there's no doubt Ryan Shawcross did not go out to cause both Ramsey's tibia and fibula to snap.
Ramsey was really starting to hit form. He was known as a rising star but it wasn't until his performance for Wales in a 3-0 victory over Scotland in November 2009 was his quality truly realised.
The game was owned by one player. Ramsey dominated that game from start to being substituted, and this was a Scotland team with the likes of Darren Fletcher, Kenny Miller and Steven Naismith. Three terrific players transcended by a young man at the tender age of 18.
Subsequent to this, the young Welshman began a strong run in the Arsenal team, scoring goals and creating assists. The Gunners had found a young man with the capacity to go on to become a real saint in the eyes of the club.
But then came Stoke away and thus began Ramsey's boundless stint away from the game.
Nine months passed until Ramsey's long awaited return to the game, and his first match back was in a Nottingham Forest shirt, where he'd been sent on loan in order to regain his match fitness. However his time was limited, making just five appearances before returning to Arsenal.
Evidently, Arsenal still didn't think he was ready to rejoin the ranks, so sent him back to his hometown club Cardiff on a month's loan.
While he was there, it seemed he was slowly regaining form, making assists and even scoring a goal in his final game against Leicester City. Cardiff wanted to extend the loan contract to keep Aaron there till the end of the season; but Arsenal wouldn't have it. They wanted their young superstar back.
During the end of the 2010-2011 season, Ramsey had seemingly never been away, playing great football and standing out in a very talented Arsenal squad. He even scored the winner against Manchester United on May 1st. Fans started to think that the injury may not have affected him at all.
However, during the next two seasons, things turned against the Welshman. He was soon criticised for slowing down the pace of the game, being indecisive and poorly executing passes and also, not scoring enough goals.
You could argue the burden of becoming Wales' youngest ever captain at the age of 20 years and 90 days was too much pressure on a young man, and it could have been too much.
Either way, Ramsey's form had dropped and didn't look like coming back.
No-one could ever fault his work rate, every performance was tireless - yet it seemed the other parts of his game had slipped. Pundits were harsh, he didn't have the fans on his side, one wouldn't be blamed for thinking he might be leaving the club soon.
This had been seen before at Arsenal. Tomas Rosicky had been a fantastic addition to the Arsenal squad and looked to be a more than appropriate replacement for Robert Pires. After sustaining a hamstring injury in the 07-08 season, Rosicky missed over a season of football.
Fans were excited by his return, which started well, but a drop in form and less playing time for the Czech idol seemed to spell out the end of his Arsenal career.
However, over the past two seasons (especially in the post christmas stages), Arsenal have gone on some incredible runs of form to help them stay in the top four, and Tomas Rosicky was at the forefront of this.
Rosicky regained the love from the fans and was highly praised by all for his forward thinking and the pace he brought to the game.
Rosicky may well have been the inspiration Ramsey needed. After a decent spell in the team at the end of last season, Ramsey has played every game so far for The Gunners (with the exception of the Capital One Cup tie against West Brom), winning Arsenal's first player of the month award of the season and creating some impressive stats for himself.
Currently in the Premier League, Ramsey has scored three goals (one behind the leaders), made the most tackles (22), completed the second most passes (376), completed the fifth most forward passes (behind three defenders and Michael Carrick) and completed the most through balls (six).
Thus far, Ramsey has been Arsenal's most influential player - his up turn in form has made him feel like a new signing for Arsenal. His tireless work, precise passing and an eye for a goal have mad everyone regain faith in the 22 year old, and his future looks incredibly bright once again.
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