Arsenal midfielder Andrey Arshavin fears his career is on the slide - and he has no idea of how to recapture his best form. The Russian ace revealed he sometimes doubts whether he can still cut it and accepted boss Arsene Wenger was right to drop him.
He said: "Now when I get the ball, I begin to think, 'Should I try and trick an opponent? Or if I do, will I lose the ball? And what if I make a pass? Won't they think that I am trying to get rid of the ball?'
"I am afraid of taking the initiative. When such thoughts appear, your final decision, as a rule, turns out to be wrong. And you waste a lot of opportunities.
"That was happening to me in recent matches."
Arshavin's biggest fear is that he has lost a yard of pace and admits Theo Walcott and Samir Nasri deserve their starting places.
He added: "I do not have enough acceleration. From the very start of this season I felt I'm fast enough only in separate episodes.
"The reason? I don't know. Maybe I'm just getting old.
"Naturally, I'd like to be on the pitch in every game - but currently the boys who play in my position, Samir Nasri and Theo Walcott, look very good. They're really in good shape and that's why they're playing.
"To get back my place in the starting XI, I need to regain my best form. All I can do is work in training. There are no other recipes for building up your form."