When Declan Glass dreamed of becoming a footballer he never imagined he’d suffer an injury hell before his career had kicked off.
But that’s exactly what happened as Glass spent the last year sidelined, recovering from a serious knee injury in isolation from his Dundee United team-mates.
Glass was crocked before his loan spell to Partick Thistle kicked off.
But the happy-go-lucky midfielder steadfastly refused to let it get him down.
And after making his first United start in 21 MONTHS in their Beautiful Saturday win over Hibernian, Glass was positively beaming.
“It was an amazing feeling to be back on the park,” said Glass. “It’s been a long 21 months wait to start for Dundee United.
“The last 12 months have been hell. I could never imagine that I’d miss an entire year of football from the age of 20 to 21.
“I was sitting in the gym every day while the boys were going to training.
“It wasn’t normal because of the Covid situation. I wasn’t seeing as many boys very often. It was tough.
🗣 "I felt a snap at the time and when I woke up the next morning my knee was like a beach ball."
📺 ICYMI DUTV subscribers can hear from Declan Glass as he updates us on his recovery after suffering an ACL injury earlier this season ➡️ https://t.co/kVfZgjwQee#UnitedTogether pic.twitter.com/RdjLSvuYsy
— Dundee United FC (@dundeeunitedfc) March 11, 2021
“I was completely separate from the group for the last year. Keeping in touch with them away from training really helped.
“And I’m a very positive person.
“As much as I’m saying it felt like hell, if you ask anyone at the club they’ll tell you I always come in with a smile on my face.
“In a weird sort of way, I’ve enjoyed and embraced every minute of my recovery.
“I’ve also learned a good bit about the game. It’s amazing what you pick up when you are watching.
“I’m an easy-going guy and I just want to enjoy my football.
“Going out at places like Easter Road is what it’s all about. It’s a great stadium and when I stepped out to see the crowd I was really excited.
“I blurred all of the noise out when the whistle went and controlled my emotions.
“But what a feeling to be playing again. It’s brilliant.”
Declan Glass: Dundee United gave me incredible support
Great to See Deco back out there yesterday. 😍
— Dundee United FC (@dundeeunitedfc) October 17, 2021
Glass was given a new two-year deal at United in the summer and his bosses regularly speak highly of his positive attitude on the training pitch.
And as he prepares to make an impact on the park, Glass is full of praise for the people who helped him get there.
“I can’t speak highly enough of the people who have got me through this,” said Glass.
“From Marcin Szostak the head physio to Gregor Leighton and Kyler Burns in the sports science team.
“They have all been incredible.
✍️ We are thrilled to announce that Our Academy graduate Declan Glass has extended his contract for a further two seasons.
🗣 "I'm buzzing to get this extension signed. The main goal now is to break in Dundee United's first team and make an impact."#UnitedTogether
— Dundee United FC (@dundeeunitedfc) August 6, 2021
“The club have always supported me. I’m on something like my fourth or fifth contract now.
“I can’t speak highly enough of the coaches, the chairman Mark Ogren or our sporting director Tony Asghar.
“They have given me everything I’ve asked for over the last year and I want to repay them on the pitch.”