Former Carlisle United midfielder Jason Kennedy making the most of his new lease of life at Hartlepool United following injury time winner against Yeovil Town

After being told he may never play football again, it’s 92nd-minute winners like we saw on Saturday that make the hard work worthwhile for Jason Kennedy.

Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 12:01 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 12:09 pm
Hartlepool United's Jason Kennedy celebrates after scoring their second goal during the Vanarama National League match between Hartlepool United and Yeovil Town at Victoria Park, Hartlepool on Saturday 5th October 2019. (Credit: Mark Fletcher | MI News)

The Pools midfielder signed during the summer as he looked to put his injury troubles behind him after over two years of torture that left him unable to walk for months.

But on Saturday, Kennedy looked a million miles away from a player who had been wheelchair bound little over a year ago.

The 33-year-old rolled back the years with a dominating midfield display against Yeovil Town which was topped with a fitting 92nd-minute winner.

The Teesside native has been a regular for United’s first-team since his return to the north east and his desire to make up for lost time and repay the faith shown in him by manager Craig Hignett is what drives him forward.

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“After going two and a half years not playing really to getting 13 games already this year is massive,” Kennedy admitted.

“I got told that may never happen again so I’m just enjoying it and making the most of it and it’s even better when you get great results like we did Saturday.

“It’s good to be out there and I feel good, I’ve not missed a day training, it was all about just proving myself.

“The gaffer is great and if you work hard and give it your own then he’ll back you to the hilt. He’s done that with me and hopefully I can repay him with a few more goals and performances.

“After the first two games of the season he took me out of the team but pulled me aside and told me why and as a player you respect that.”

As well as the physical battle, Kennedy felt he also won the mental battle to overcome his injury nightmare.

“When you get told that you might never play football again, in my head I never believed that, it was just something that was said to me,” he added.

“There was no doubt I’d play football again. Obviously there were times I felt helpless being in a wheelchair but I just stayed focused on the end result and always believed.”