Declan Glass hopes he is over the worst of his injury problems after joining Cove Rangers for a second loan spell.
Glass was Paul Hartley’s first signing after returning as Cove boss a fortnight ago as he chases fitness and game-time.
Following his first loan spell at Cove during the 2019/20 campaign, Glass was sent to Partick Thistle for a similar stint but suffered a cruciate ligament injury, which kept him out for over a year.
Upon his return, he featured briefly for the Dundee United first-team before struggling for game-time on loan at Kilmarnock.
He spent the first half of this season with League of Ireland side Derry City, where he was also troubled by a hamstring issue.
Glass is now desperate to make the most of his Balmoral Stadium return.
“Looking back at last year – I sound like a guy from the pub – but the injury problems I’ve had, only those closest to me probably know how detrimental they were to me playing at certain clubs,” he said.
“I don’t really want to sound like that guy who sits on the stool in the pub with a pint. I feel like I’ve done a lot of work nutritionally and I feel in good condition.
“I feel a level of robustness is coming back after returning from a cruciate injury, which has been difficult.”
Knocks and niggles
Despite his misfortune with injury, he has still been able to collect four medals in his career.
He featured enough during his first Cove spell to win a League Two medal, while also winning Championship honours with Killie and United. He added to that with FAI Cup glory with Derry City.
But he still feels short of his best on the park, owing to his lack of regular football.
“I’m lacking match-sharpness, that yard you’ve probably seen from my before when I’m skipping past players,” said Glass.
“I’ve not played much football in the last year in all honesty, 2022 was a bit of a write-off.
“I’ve picked up knocks and niggles and getting fit is important. I can still use the full-time environment I’ve got at Dundee United to get myself up to speed.
“The most important thing is playing games and ultimately, that’s what gets you in match-ready condition.”
Glass made his debut for parent club United in 2017 but has not been able to nail down a regular spot at Tannadice.
However, he is not giving his future there too much thought, given the pressing matters at hand with Cove.
“I’m 22 and it feels like I’ve been about forever,” said Glass. “My immediate future is at Cove Rangers and that’s all I’m looking towards.
“I’ve got 18 months left on my contract at Dundee United but my main focus right now is playing games and impacting games for Cove Rangers.”