Arsenal's forgotten man Abou Diaby has returned to first team training following a spell on the sidelines of over five months. The midfielder has not featured for the Gunners since September, playing 67 minutes in the League Cup defeat to Southampton.
The France international had been out since October with a thigh strain and a calf injury, missing 34 games. Since his return, the 28-year-old has played in two Under-21 games and an Arsenal XI game against Brentford.
The midfielder only made one appearance for the Gunners last season, in the final league game at Norwich. Diaby came off the bench for the final quarter of an hour and was greeted by a standing ovation from the travelling supporters.
The Frenchman was once tipped as the next Patrick Vieira but has seen his career ravaged by injury, only making 180 appearances for the north London club in nine years. Diaby's worst injury kept him out for over a year and even led the midfielder to change his squad number.
The cursed number two shirt has not brought new signing Mathieu Debuchy much luck either. The 29-year-old has been hit with two injuries this season keeping him out for over five months in total.
Midfielder Diaby signed for Arsenal in January 2006 from Auxerre for £2.6 million. The 28-year-old's contract runs out at the end of the season and the general consensus is that the Frenchman will leave the club.
However, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has persisted with Diaby over his nine year spell at the north London club, and rumours have already started circulating that the Frenchman will be given a pay-as-you-play contract, if he makes a return this season.
With Arsenal having an abundance of midfield talent it is difficult to see where the lanky midfielder will feature. Coupled with reports of new talent joining in the summer, it is unlikely the injury plagued player will be given a new contract.
Do you think Abou Diaby should be given a new pay-as-you-play contract?