Gilberto targets comeback
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Gilberto Silva is determined to play again for Arsenal this season.Gilberto Silva is determined to play again for Arsenal this season and rubbished suggestions his back injury is career-threatening.
The Brazilian midfielder has not played for The Gunners since mid-September after fracturing vertebrae in his back.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger had hinted it would be unlikely that Gilberto would return before the end of the campaign.
There had also been speculation that the severity of the injury would cast a cloud over the 28-year-old's career.
But Gilberto has scotched talk he will have to retire and is hoping he can make his comeback by the time Arsenal play in the second round of the UEFA Champions League at the end of February.
"My message for the people who say my injury is career-threatening is this: forget it," affirmed Gilberto.
"I don't know where these fears about my career being in doubt are coming from.
"I've been wearing an orthopaedic vest for the last two months, taking it off only to have a shower or to sleep. But I don't feel any pain.
"I will undergo new tests next week and if everything is all right, I will start the physio again soon.
"I expect to be back as soon as I can and my goal is to be ready and available for Arsenal's next matches in the Champions League."