Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby is close to making a return from a knee injury and has not given up hope of forcing his way into France's World Cup squad, reports The Guardian. The 27-year-old has yet to make an appearance for Arsenal this season after suffering an ACL injury in training last year.
However, in an interview with France Football, he admitted he is hopeful of returning to full training in the next few weeks.
"I will take stock with Arsenal medical staff early in April, but I hope to resume collective training sessions very soon," he said.
"I never had such a long break. I never had a knee injury and it is really weird. You can feel physically there is something different. But I learnt a lot from my injuries. I can keep things in perspective.
"Even now I am very close to the end of my specific work, I keep things in perspective. I can master my impatience. I want to be back being strong, very strong and perfectly at ease in my body.
"I work hard without asking questions. I work hard because I know in the end I will play again. I am still a high level footballer in my mind, otherwise I would have given up. But I never think to give it up.
Diaby added: "It doesn't mean I never had difficult moments, but I have always bounced back. Some people experience much more difficult things in their lives. I know my reward will be to have fun playing again.
"My priorities? Feeling fine and play again before the end of the season. I don't think I will be scared to play. I trust my body. Nowadays I feel strong, but I know coming back to London I will also have some changes. I am watching closely my diet and recovering periods."
Diaby also remains hopeful that he can force his way into the France squad for Brazil.
"I've never given up hope of going to the World Cup," he said.
"Thinking of that has kept me going. Once I'm back on pitch, everything's possible."
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