Roberto’s faith got me through hell – Maloney

Midweek Sport - - NEWS - By TREVOR WIL­LIAMS

SHAUN MALONEY has thanked Roberto Martinez for drag­ging him through the in­jury hell that made him ques­tion whether he could carry on.

Maloney, 30, reck­ons he is only just start­ing to show his true qual­ity af­ter years of frus­tra­tion.

His first stint at Celtic was wrecked by knee trou­ble and he has also been ham­pered by an­kle prob­lems.

Even when he first pitched up at Wi­gan in 2011 he took months to get fit and only forced his way into the Lat­ics line-up a year ago.

But he whacked in vi­tal goals to en­sure Martinez’s side stayed in the Pre­mier League with a mir­a­cle run of seven wins from nine matches at the end of the sea­son, which in­cluded his in­cred­i­ble win­ning strike against Man United.

Maloney will al­ways be grate­ful to his man­ager for the chance.

Plagued

And he re­vealed there were times he won­dered if he would ever be able to show his real abil­ity.

He was re­warded for his con­sis­tent show­ings with a new deal last month and con­sid­ers the last year to be the best of his ca­reer.

He said: “Be­fore I came to the club I’d been plagued by in­juries.

“Be­cause of that the past year has been as en­joy­able as foot­ball has been for a long time in my ca­reer.

“The man­ager at Wi­gan was very pa­tient with me, prob­a­bly more pa­tient than I was at times, but his faith in me also served as a push to get back to my best.”

He added: “I still feel as though I can con­trib­ute more to the team.

“I should have more goals to my name this sea­son and should be cre­at­ing more chances.

“But that will come from harder work in train­ing.”

FIGHT­ING FIT: Maloney signed

a new Lat­ics deal last month

PA­TIENT: Martinez

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