Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata has opened up on his injury hell in his first season at the club after appearing to struggle for fitness and form on the pitch.
The Spain international hasn’t lived up to expectations at Stamford Bridge so far after a big-money move from Real Madrid that saw him brought in to replace last season’s top scorer Diego Costa.
In fairness, that’s a lot to live up to, but Morata certainly hasn’t shown the kind of ability he’s displayed at his previous clubs and he’s aware it hasn’t gone so swimmingly for him.
Still, the 25-year-old also says people don’t know the full story and has explained how he’s had to have injections in his back to help him push through an injury that hasn’t truly been cleared up by doctors.
Morata has had trouble with his back and says not know exactly what the problem is has made it harder, while he also feels he should have taken more time out to rest when the pain was at its worst.
‘It has been a complicated year for me and I don’t think it’s been the best year for the team either,’ he told Marca.
‘I’ve gone through a tough year. It all started so well. Everybody loved me and I was scoring goals, but it’s different now. People say things to me on the street, but they don’t know what I’ve gone through.
‘The person who does know what I’ve gone through is my wife. I would rather have torn a muscle and be out for three months than not know exactly what I had. I wanted to play and to keep scoring, but I couldn’t. I didn’t know what I had. The Chelsea doctor did, but we went to see doctors in England and they didn’t find that. We went to Germany and what happened there was very difficult for me.
‘I had to go several times to Germany to receive a treatment in which they put injections in my back. It hurt a lot and then I would have to return to London to train the next day. I think I made a mistake. I should have stopped playing. When you’re injured you’re injured and that’s that. You can maybe play one match, but you can’t carry on for a month.
‘On top of that, I didn’t have much luck during this time. If I’d scored in one of those matches then something would have changed. The head is in charge and controls everything.
‘The day before playing against West Ham they told me that I was going to become a father. I wanted to play, but I couldn’t even move in the warm-ups. I told the doctor to inject me because I had to play. I wanted to dedicate a goal to my future children and, from then on, I entered into a mode where I didn’t want to stop because I wanted to demonstrate something. It was all bad.’