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England’s Luke Shaw Confident Ahead of Euro 2024 Semi-Finals After Injury Struggle

England’s left-back Luke Shaw recently shed light on the arduous journey he faced while recuperating from an injury before making his comeback in the Three Lions’ Euro 2024 quarter-final victory over Switzerland. Shaw, who has been sidelined since February, made a notable return to the field, much to the delight of fans and teammates.

Before making his appearance against Switzerland, Shaw had endured a significant period on the sidelines, battling through a challenging recovery. The 28-year-old left-back was initially expected to make a swift return, but a series of setbacks delayed his comeback, leaving him eager to get back on the pitch.

A segment of fans had previously questioned head coach Gareth Southgate’s decision to include Shaw in the 26-player squad for the tournament. Given Shaw’s prolonged absence, many wondered if his form and fitness would meet the rigorous demands of international competition. Shaw, however, addressed these concerns head-on in a pre-match press conference ahead of England’s semi-final clash against an undisclosed opponent at Signal Iduna Park.

“The last four months have been really tough. At the start, I was expected to come back a lot sooner, but I went through a lot of setbacks. It was really nice to get on the other night and get some minutes; I’ve been itching [for it],” Shaw explained, quoted by Manchester United’s official website. His enthusiasm and determination were palpable as he expressed his readiness to contribute to the team’s ongoing campaign.

Shaw’s injury had also impacted England’s lineup in the initial stages of the tournament. He missed the first two Group C matches against Serbia and Denmark, prompting Southgate to deploy the versatile Kieran Trippier at left-back to cover for Shaw’s absence. Trippier’s experience and adaptability were commendable, but Shaw’s return brought a fresh dynamic to the team.

Ahead of the anticipated semi-final, Shaw remained optimistic about his fitness. “Of course, I think I am [fit and ready to play a full 90 minutes]; that is down to Gareth’s decision. I feel fit and ready to go.

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. I think before the squad got announced, we had a plan [for my recovery]. The plan was to come back around the second or third game [of the Euros], but unfortunately, things didn’t go as planned, and I was pushed back a game or so,” he admitted. Shaw’s confidence in his physical readiness underscored his commitment to the national cause.

Reflecting on his recovery journey, Shaw spoke about the critical role that the coaching and medical staff played. Their unwavering support and dedication were pivotal in his return to form. “They were really there for me, not just Gareth and Steve [Holland, the assistant coach], but the medical staff as well. I have a lot to thank them for. It’s been strange,” he acknowledged.

Shaw also touched upon the emotional challenges of his recovery. Attending games, soaking in the electrifying atmosphere, and yet not being able to don the England jersey or participate was an emotionally overwhelming experience. However, these moments also served as powerful motivators for Shaw, driving him to push through his rehabilitation and regain his position in the squad.

“It’s also been difficult as well, going to games, feeling the atmosphere, not putting the shirt on, or being involved in games was hard, but that motivated me more to work [my way] back. The atmosphere in those games spurred me on. I was, of course, excited to come back but the priority was to help us get back into the game and get us through,” Shaw reflected.

With England poised for their semi-final showdown at Signal Iduna Park, Shaw’s return is seen as a significant boost for the team. His resilience and determination not only highlight his personal journey of overcoming adversity but also underscore the collective spirit driving the Three Lions forward in Euro 2024.

(With agency inputs)