Tranmere Rovers forward Charlie Jolley has spoken about his recent injury setback and how he’s managed to overcome it.
After breaking through to the Rovers team in the 2021-22 season, he scored four times in 12 appearances, but a serious knee injury set him back the whole of the most recent campaign.
Recently, he’s signed a new contract at Prenton Park and has been in rehabilitation, gradually joining back in with the squad.
He found signing for Rovers when he did challenging but felt like he’d adapted well until his injury.
“It was a tough start after signing for Tranmere. Initially when I signed I thought I may have had a bigger impact but my chances were very limited. I went on loan, which was the best thing for me and I’ll always be thankful to Bern and Jono (ex-Chester managers) for helping me show what I can do. Since then, I believe I done well when I was given an opportunity for Tranmere.
“Obviously the injury came about at a time I was hoping to contribute to the team for the 22/23 season which was the worst part of my professional career to date.”
With his real break into football coming from the non-league pyramid, with loan spells at Curzon Ashton and Chester, Jolley expressed how hard the jump to the EFL was.
“It’s the biggest jump that you can make I think. Going from playing against boys we’re you may me physically more developed to going to play against unbelievable pros. I think having Peter Clarke and Jay Spearing to name a few, helped me develop and quickly adapt to the demands and also make me aware of what I needed to do better in order to compete against senior players.”
In what was supposed to be an unbelievable breakthrough, where Jolley would be a regular outfit in the first team, the young striker was struck with a heart-aching injury, meaning his season ended.
Jolley described how tough the period was not being able to play for Rovers.
“It was the toughest period of my life to date!” said Jolley.
“Going from football everyday to nothing because of a bad challenge in a pre season game really took its toll. I don’t think you ever think it will happen to you until it does, and nothing can prepare you for that. For me, I am a positive person and I had good support to help me through this period, but sometimes I had to put on a face to get through days we’re I would be stuck in the gym, feeling useless. The gaffer (Micky Mellon) was good to me and kept me apart of it along with the other staff which almost softens the blow slightly.”
Despite the period around the injury being hurtful, Jolley describes the mindset he used to keep him going.
“I think always having an end goal. I will be grateful to The medical staff for the rest of my life for how they helped me get through it. Mainly the ex-physio, Ste, and Liam, who is still with us, they were with me every step of the way and I feel great being back on the pitch now.
“A lot of credit has to go to them guys for always pushing me and giving me a focus which is hard for a someone who is used to booting balls around all day.”
As a footballer, the buzz around returning to the field is always the most joyous emotion for footballers, and one that Jolley shared.
“I can’t wait (to be back), just to be back with the lads is a great feeling and I am looking forward to being back on the pitch, helping the team and trying to score some goals.”
Image: Tony Coombes/TRFC