Whenever a player suffers a particularly bad injury after being at the wrong end of an unfortunate or dangerous challenge, getting back to the same level they were playing at before is extremely difficult.
Luke Shaw, however, looks like he has never been away from the game since returning from his horrific double leg-break suffered last September.
Often the most critical point during someone's rehabilitation is going into another potentially dangerous situation and how that person acts in that split second they are required to make a decision.
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Well, Shaw has revealed the role his Manchester United teammate Ashley Young played in his recovery by doing exactly that.
The England left-back had been given a slightly easier ride in training after his recovery but a lapse in concentration from Young, in fact, proved to be Shaw's make-or-break moment.
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The 21-year-old described his teammate's 'proper swipe' in an interview with The Guardian: “Not enough to knock me over, but you could hear the crack against the shin-pad.
"It was the first time anyone had really kicked me since I started training again and as soon as it happened, Youngy’s reaction was [hands up to his face]: ‘Ah, sh*t.’
“Nobody had wanted to be the one to do it. You could tell he felt really bad – ‘Shit, are you OK?’ – but he didn’t have to. He’d hit my leg and it was fine. ‘I’m good, I’m good.’ And I was. I was really good. It was fine, and I’d needed that kick.”
Shaw hasn't looked back since and it would appear that a full pre-season in Jose Mourinho's new regime has done wonders for his fitness, form and confidence.
His performances in the first two Premier League games of the season have shown just how badly Louis van Gaal missed him. Both Shaw and Antonio Valencia have felt like new signings in Man United's defence recently and their attacking tendencies have been key to team's success so far.
But Shaw has also admitted that things could have gone very differently had he chosen to grasp the opportunity to link up with Mourinho prior to this summer when Chelsea registered their interest in signing him from Southampton.
The left-back added that the Portuguese boss actually joked about the failed move after Mourinho was appointed his new manager at Old Trafford.
Shaw continued: “We’ve had a little joke about it. He’s a cool manager. ‘Why didn’t you come?’ he wanted to know. I just felt I had more opportunity of first-team football here.
“But now I’m with him and I’m really happy he’s here. It hasn’t been the best few years but all of a sudden it feels really good, really positive.
"We feel we have that fear factor back where people are thinking this team is going to be hard to beat. I’m fit, I’m happy, I still feel I have a lot more to give. I just want to push on now.”
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