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Shea targets strong return

16 December 2015

Goalkeeper back in the groove after injury

James Shea says he’s aiming to recapture his impressive form from last season after putting a two-month injury lay-off behind him.

For those who may have missed it, an interview with the 24-year-old goalkeeper featured in Saturday’s match day programme and since then Shea marked his return with a clean sheet for the development squad against Cambridge on Monday.

The full interview is reproduced below.

James Shea has set his sights on recapturing the form that made him such a favourite with supporters last season after making his return.

Though it’s been an eventful time for James away from football as he became a father for the first time, the former Arsenal goalkeeper is now fully focused on repeating the match-winning displays of his debut season with AFC Wimbledon.

A groin injury has kept James out of action since the home defeat against Morecambe, but he’s now back in the reckoning.

“It’s been great to be back training with the boys and doing goalkeeping work instead of being in the gym. No disrespect to Jason Moriarty, but I did not want to be with him any longer! Hopefully, I can come back stronger after recovering from injury and get back to the form I was in last season.

“The first time I felt the injury was in the home game against Notts County, but I played about four or five games with it until the match against Morecambe. When they got a penalty in that game I twisted and then felt a lot of pain. From then on I was struggling. It was a bad day at the office for everyone against Morecambe.”

Supporting his partner Charlotte ahead of the birth of his daughter Amelia on 6 November kept him occupied during his extended spell out and he praised the club’s medical team for edging him back to full fitness.

James added: “I was injured when I became a father, but I certainly didn’t plan it like that! It’s unbelievable to be a father and I would not change it for the world. Now I want to get back playing football.

“I got injured in the same game as Andy Barcham and Stuart Douglas has treated us like kings during our recovery. He has been brilliant with us, apart from one day about two weeks ago when we did a lot of short, sharp fitness stuff. I thought I was going to collapse and he nearly killed me!

“I think we are in a good position in the league at the moment and we are within reach of the play-off spots. In the games I played and the ones I’ve watched I don’t think one team has out-played us. The Dagenham game killed us a bit, but we’ve only lost twice in eight league games so we are in decent form. We have a very good team and I think on our day we can beat anyone.”

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