Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli believes he has come back stronger from an injury-hit season which took its toll on body and mind.
England international Alli battled recurring hamstring problems last season, the worst of which kept him sidelined for the entire month of February.
The issues restricted him to career-low figures for starts and goals in the Premier League and forced manager Mauricio Pochettino to make running alterations in the middle of the park.
But after a confidence-boosting 45 minutes in the club's opening International Champions Cup clash – a 3-2 victory over Juventus – the 23-year-old thinks the worst is in the past.
"It was obviously a difficult season for me in terms of injuries," Alli told reporters in Shanghai, where Tottenham will face Manchester United on Thursday.
"It was the most injuries I've ever had in one season. I've got to use it all to go forward and not think about it in a negative way.
"Every time I got injured I was trying to come back as strong as I could, to have a break and use the time to work on the things that weren't quite right, keep building and come back stronger.
"I feel like I've done that. I've got to keep working on those things throughout the season. I feel like I used the time well."
Alli said watching his team-mates share a rollercoaster ride into the Champions League final meant the anguish was as much psychological as physical.
"It's the most injuries I've ever had and it's tough not just physically but mentally as well. You have to dig deep," the former MK Dons player said.
"Sitting in the treatment room and watching the lads train and watching at games is not nice. You obviously want to be out there helping your team.
"We had a great season as a team but individually I was disappointed to get the injuries. I've got to make sure that doesn't happen again."
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