🇬🇧🇬🇭 Callum Hudson-Odoi opens up on a challenging season dealing with injuries and contracting the coronavirus
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🇬🇧🇬🇭 Callum Hudson-Odoi opens up on a challenging season dealing with injuries and contracting the coronavirus

It has been an incredibly difficult year for everyone across the globe due to the coronavirus pandemic that has caused havoc and that goes for footballers who would rather have a forgettable season.

The footballer, in particular, is Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi who has seen his season been dealt a blow because of injury woes.

However, something positive came out of his troubles when he signed a five-year deal following lengthy talks with Frank Lampard who had just arrived at Stamford Bridge after his first managerial gig at English Championship side Derby County.

"For me personally, I think it is not the season that I would have liked to have," Hudson-Odoi told ESPN in an exclusive interview.

"I could have worked on so many aspects of my game to become a better player. I'm working hard every day and training hard every day but sometimes in a game, you want to score goals, assist goals, help the team as much possible, and I feel like this year I wasn't doing enough of that.

"So I feel, next season, when it comes, I have to try and get more goals and more assists, help the team as much as possible and hit the goals I set myself."Richard Heathcote/NMC Pool Wi / PA

The 19-year-old managed to score three goals and provide three assists in 32 appearances across all competitions in a season where he suffered an Achilles and hamstring injury respectively.

"I think to myself that when in games, I've had a couple of chances where I know I should be hitting the target or scoring," he said.

"To myself, I feel disappointed because I know I'm capable of scoring goals and capable of assisting goals so when I don't do it, I feel frustrated because I know what I can do and what I can't do.

"For me, it was more of a personal thing where, 'Cal, you can do better, you've got to keep going, keep working hard, try and get the goals and assists and help the team as much as possible." Tim Goode / PA

Apart from his consistent injury woes, Hudson-Odoi also became the first Premier League player to contract the coronavirus back in March and had to take time out to self-isolate and recover from the virus that has taken so many lives.

"It was crazy to be fair," he said. "I said to myself, 'I didn't even know this was even in England.' At the time, I was thinking to myself, it is a virus that has come around. I've heard it's in Spain, other countries where I'm like, 'Oh, this is very dangerous, but I didn't know it was in England as much. When I heard it was coming to England, I was thinking, 'OK, maybe it is up north, further away from us where it won't really come around us,' and then for me to even have it, I was just so shocked. I was like 'Are you sure I really have it?'

"The virus went quick. For me, I literally felt like I had it for a couple of hours. I felt hot and cold for a bit and after that, I felt back to myself, normal, everyone was fine. I didn't feel any symptoms, I felt good and I started doing a lot of training at home with my dad, doing a lot of gym work and bike riding in the house.

"But then also going late night jogging, making sure I'm staying healthy and keep doing the programme they sent us from Chelsea." Tim Goode / PA

The English-born Ghanaian will attempt to revive his game when the Euro 2020 campaign resumes in the summer of 2021 and will hope that he can make a difference in the team's ambitions going forward.

"We're obviously trying to build a good team for the future, not just for now," Hudson-Odoi said of Chelsea.

"Players that are coming in are top players and they've done really well at their previous clubs so hopefully they can do that here as well.

"It doesn't really matter if you've been bought or you're at the club already or whatever it is. You've always got to fight for your position and show the manager, your teammates, the fans why you should be playing every game, keep improving every day.

"[The Euros being delayed] has helped me in a way because obviously the couple of injuries that I've had this year, have halted me in games and stalled a bit of my, not just game time, but playing because I've had injuries, come back from them, started again, restart, then [been] stop and start.

"So this Euros being pushed back is a big help for me in terms of like, 'OK, you've got another whole season to prove to yourself that you are ready for the Euros, you can go there and everything will be fine -- no injuries, be injury-free.'"

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