BIRTHDAY BOY Aidy White is eyeing a belated celebration later this autumn – in the shape of a return to first-team action.
The Leeds United utility man has yet to kick a competitive ball in anger this season after being stretchered off with a broken metatarsal in the pre-season friendly clash at Chesterfield on July 26.
White, who turned 23 today, has revealed he is stepping up his comeback plans, and while he is reluctant to be a firm time-scale on when he will return, the Horsforth-born player can finally see light at the end of the tunnel.
The summer injury blow against the Spireites proved untimely in the extreme for White, who was desperate to make a renewed impact at his hometown club after a difficult 2013-14.
White was out of favour in the first half of last term under former manager Brian McDermott and then hit by an ankle injury early on in a restorative loan spell at Sheffield United.
But despite the latest chapter of woe to befall him, he is refusing to give up on his Elland Road career.
White, out of contract next summer, said: “I am just staying positive, really. Injury-wise, I am coming towards the last end of it and have started running again.
“It has been a slow process because with it being a bone injury, all you can do with it is give it time more than anything.
“But I started running last Friday and it is a case of going steady with it and not rushing it too much.
“It is one of those things you have to gradually build back up.
“But I am hoping to be back fairly soon.”
In terms of timing, White’s two injury blows, one of the eve of a new season and the other when he was making great strides in an encouraging loan stint at Bramall Lane, could not have happened at a worse possible juncture.
But despite his obvious frustration, a philosophical White, who has suffered from his fair share of injuries despite only being in his early twenties, is refusing to feel sorry for himself, while naturally hoping his luck changes.
White, who made his Whites debut at the age of just 16 in August 2008, added: “This injury was towards the back end of pre-season which made it more frustrating because at that stage, you have done all the hard work.
“I thought I’d had a good pre-season and to get that setback was disappointing and frustrating.
“I really wanted to get off to a flyer. I guess that is football and you deal with it.
“But I am working back to get back as fit as quick as I can to get my season underway again.
“I am experienced enough now to deal with things with the injuries I have had over the years and you just crack on with it.
“Getting injured is part of the job. It happens; I have just been unfortunate in tackles. More than anything, it has been bad luck in terms of the times of the year that it has happened.
“Redders (Neil Redfearn) and Harvey (Sharman) and his team are very good. They are great physios and great lads and keep my spirits up most of the time.
“They get you through the days when the lads are out training.
“But I am quite a positive person and learn to deal with it.
“It could be a couple of weeks; it could be longer - it depends on how I do and how the physios want to handle it.”
“I listen to the physios and take their advice on board. But I do want to get back as quick as I can.
“Hopefully when I am fit, I can show what I can do.”