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Arsenal's Diaby gunning to repay Wenger faith

ABOU Diaby cannot wait to make his Arsenal return if only to repay manager Arsene Wenger's faith.

The 25-year-old has suffered a number of injury problems since joining the Gunners from Auxerre in 2006 and this season has been no different.

Diaby has been restricted to just three Arsenal appearances, coming off the bench in games against Borussia Dortmund, Fulham and Liverpool.

Arsenal boss Wenger believes Diaby has the potential to be a "massive" player for the club despite his injury woes, which the midfielder says have been easier to cope with thanks to strong support from those at the club.

"I just need to carry on and stay focused every day in my rehabilitation," he said. "I feel in a good way now.

"Football itself has motivated me because it's the thing that I love.

"There is also my family and team-mates, manager, medical staff -- they have all helped me.

"It is a big motivation for me that the boss said about me (being a "massive" player). I want to be thankful to him and show him that he is right."

It is yet to be seen whether Diaby will return before the season's end and add to the 54 minutes of first-team action he has managed so far.

While a succession of injuries have stopped the France international realising his full potential, he revealed recent events have put his struggles into context.

Former Arsenal midfielder Fabrice Muamba is still recovering after suffering a cardiac arrest playing for Bolton last month, while Barcelona's Eric Abidal has had to undergo a liver transplant.

"To be honest there are some situations where you think about your future, but it is important to stay positive," Diaby said. "The only thing you can do is look forward and stay positive.

"There are always worse situations in life than me, even in football when you look at what happened to Muamba or Abidal. Me, it's nothing."