Eduardo reveals injury impact

Former Gunners star admits career downfall since horror break

Eduardo: Now with Shakhtar

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Former Arsenal striker Eduardo da Silva admits the horrific leg break he suffered in 2008 has changed his career.

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The Shakhtar Donetsk star travels back to his old club on Tuesday to face the Gunners in the UEFA Champions League after making a summer switch to Ukraine.

Over two and a half years ago, Eduardo was the victim of a mistimed tackle from former Birmingham defender Martin Taylor which left him with a broken fibula and dislocated ankle.

Eduardo returned to the first team almost a year after the event, but failed to make the sort of impact expected of him at the Emirates, which contributed to his £6million move to wealthy Shakhtar.

The Croatia international is not a guaranteed starter with the Ukraine champions, but he believes he could have been spearheading the Gunners' attack this week instead of the opposition.

"It wasn't my fault I broke my leg, but it's true to say that moment changed my sporting career," Eduardo said.

"I don't know what would have happened if I hadn't suffered the injury, but perhaps with more continuity I would still have been in the team.

"If I play it will be very emotional, but I'm just trying to concentrate on the game and I am calm about the match.

"Shakhtar Donetsk are coming to London calm ahead of a difficult game.

"We have won the first two matches and we feel less pressured. It won't be easy, but we want to spring a surprise."

Fondness

The 27-year-old admits a great fondness for the North London club, its players and supporters, but he is fully intent on leaving his mark for Shakhtar at the Emirates on Tuesday.

He added: "I want to be remembered for being the best player on the pitch and not for my past with the Gunners, although I don't go into this game looking for any personal revenge.

"The supporters were always behind me and they are in my heart and I am still in touch with Denilson, Cesc Fabregas and Robin [van Persie]."

With star striker van Persie on the sidelines, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has just three recognised senior forwards fit at present, but he has no regrets about offloading Brazilian-born Eduardo.

Wenger said: "I rate Eduardo, not only for the quality he has, but for his mental attitude and the strength he showed when he was so badly injured.

"I let him go because he wouldn't get the games and needed to play.

"He had a good opportunity to play somewhere and was at an age where he needed to play and convince himself he can play again.

"Credit to him, he never gave up, but when you're out for such a long time somebody else comes in."