Jack Beesley has barely kicked a ball in anger for the best part of a year thanks to a recurring groin injury, but is now fit again and back for Spartans’ nine remaining league games and at least one cup final.
Beesley marked his long awaited return with a goal in the recent Football Nation Qualifying Cup semi-final win over Gala Fairydean Rovers, and netted again in the 6-2 league win over the same opponents at the weekend.
While he’s yet to reach peak match fitness, the winger is delighted to be back in red and white again after a frustrating lay-off caused by an injury that has been a long-term issue. “Apart from the last couple of weeks, May last year was my last set of matches,” Beesley explained. “I had a persistent groin injury which required injections and some quite extensive rehab to try and hold it at bay. I’ve had it for about eight or nine years – it flares up every so often. It’s a problem with my groin and my pelvis which I’ve had since Uni and it flares up once or twice a season so to stop that happening I ended up getting injections and had to do 12 weeks rehab. Touch wood, it seems to be working okay so far and it’s now about trying to make as much of a contribution as I can in what’s left of the season.
“It’s good to be back involved in wee snippets here and there. I was supposed to play a couple of games for our second team, which unfortunately got cancelled. That was a shame because I wanted to get some more minutes but it’s good to have been back in the last three or four weeks. I’m 100 per cent in terms of not being injured but probably less in terms of match fitness. I’ve played 50 minutes and two 20 minutes so I’m probably a wee bit undercooked in terms of game time, but injury-wise I’m fine.”
‘Beezer’ admitted he’s not the best when it comes watching instead of playing, but his work as a community coach with the Spartans Football Academy meant he never felt any sense of isolation from the club which can sometimes occur during long-term absences.
“I get quite frustrated watching,” he said. “But sometimes you learn things from watching as well, especially about the guys that you’re playing with, because I’ve not played with a lot of the boys until the last few weeks. I’m probably no the best guy to watch with as I get a bit grumpy!
“In terms of the coaching, it debilitated me for the first couple of weeks but aside from that it’s been fine. It’s good to still keep my eye in and maintaining mobility – it’s not as if I’m sitting at a desk all day. I’m at the Academy 50-odd hours a week, so while not completely immersed in the football side of things, I can still keep an eye on what’s going on so that’s certainly helped.”
Dougie Samuel’s men host BSC Glasgow in the South Challenge Cup tomorrow in what was originally meant to be the second leg of a double header until Wednesday’s game was postponed, which Beesley feels could be of benefit.
“It [playing opposition twice in succession] can be difficult but it depends on how the first game goes. It can put doubt in the opposition’s mind with the second being so soon, but it’s only one now.
“It’ll be a tough game and we’re certainly hoping we can do well.”