Injury-prone Abou Diaby completes return to fitness

Arsenal Logo

The Marseille anchorman was delighted to accomplish his target.

Former Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby completed 90 minutes of football for the first time since 2013 on Wednesday.

The defensive-minded ball-winner started and remained on pitch for the longevity of the clash to help Marseille reach the French Cup final with a 1-0 win over second division Sochaux.

The ex-France international, who won 16 caps for his country, has been plagued with a string of never-ending injuries for the past six years, resulting in him featuring in just 34 games over that period.

The last time Diaby completed the whole 90 minutes of a match came about in a 1-0 defeat to Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup in February 2013, in a game which was settled by Colin Kazim-Richards’ second-half strike, as recorded by Soccerway.

Diaby joined Marseille last July but due to a loss of fitness only made his first appearance for the club in March. Following the sacking of manager Michel on Tuesday, Diaby was recalled to the starting line-up and revealed his delight at the end of the cup semi-final.

He was quotes as saying to L’Equipe: "It's a huge relief to have played the whole match. It's been a long time since I've played for as long.

"I'm very happy, all the more so since there was a win at the end. Now there are a few matches left to continue this momentum and prepare well for the final.”

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch