Joe Gomez is perhaps a forgotten hero amongst Liverpool fans nowadays. It was he who partnered Virgil van Dijk during Liverpool’s Premier League-winning campaign, winning 23 of 28 appearances while helping to keep 13 clean sheets.
However, since then the 26-year-old has suffered his fair share of injuries and has struggled to get back into Jurgen Klopp’s side since.
In particular, when Gomez was at the peak of his powers following the 2019/20 season, he suffered a dreadful knee injury that kept him out of action for 231 days.
Since then, Joel Matip and Ibrahima Konate have solidified their positions in the team, especially Konate who seems to grow in ability after every game.
Gomez has opened up on the hardships he has faced since the glittering Premier League triumph, which must seem like a long time ago now for the Liverpool man.
“The injuries I had were rough at times. I think the first one caught me at a vulnerable time when I had just come up to Liverpool.”
“I was only 18 and had just moved up by myself so it was tough in a sense that I was like on a new journey, living by myself and dealing with that,” Gomez told Jacamo and CALM ahead of helping to launch a new line of Adidas activewear (quotes courtesy of the Liverpool Echo).
Once I got injured, I had a lot of spare time,” he continued. “I think that’s the biggest thing you notice as a player, that when you’re on the pitch training you don’t have time to be thinking, you’re just in your subconscious enjoying the game.”
His injury issues would sadly continue well into his Liverpool career, and perhaps stunted the growth of a centre-back that could not only excel at Liverpool but also for England on the international stage.
“But I used that experience. I had a couple of little injuries and then my last one with my hamstring,” sustained against Real Madrid in February this year, “was a big one and sort of did rock my world.”
“It made me up my appreciation. Once I got back into football, I had other battles with worrying about my body and things that I couldn’t control aside from doing the work I needed to do.”
“It’s just appreciation and being thankful that I can do what I still do.”
“I am drawing on to that to keep me motivated to still do my gym sessions, even when we come back from an away game.”
“I just remember in those moments where it was tough, aside from that, just enjoying it.”
Gomez made an appearance off the bench this season against Bournemouth and will hope to put the injury worries behind him and get back to the level all Liverpool fans know he is capable of.