Aaron Lennon has expressed his gratitude for the support he has received from his family, Everton and the football world as a whole during what was a difficult period for him earlier this year.
The winger was detained under section 36 of the Mental Health Act in May and underwent treatment at The Priory in Darlington and Altrincham and also the Salford Royal Hospital but is back among his team-mates and looking ahead to the new season.
Lennon will be hoping to force his way back into the first-team reckoning at Goodison Park this coming season after making just eight starts in all competitions under Ronald Koeman last term.
Yannick Bolasie's injury and Gerard Deulofeu's departure for Barcelona have removed two obstacles standing in his way and he says he is "ready to kick on."
“It's great to be back after a difficult period," the 30-year-old said of his return to training for pre-season. "I've had a good first week of training and I can't wait to kick on now.
“I want to thank all the staff and patients at The Priory in both Darlington and Altrincham and all the staff at Salford Royal Hospital.
“The support I've had from Everton, Spurs, their fans, football fans and concerned members of the general public has been incredible.
“It's important to emphasise that there is amazing help out there and anyone feeling anything out of the ordinary should seek support because it is great and good to talk.
“Lastly, a special thanks to the staff at Everton, my team-mates, and especially my family and the people around me.”
Reader Comments (36)
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1 Posted 11/07/2017 at 06:37:18
Looking forward to seeing you on the pitch very soon.
Best of luck!
2 Posted 11/07/2017 at 06:50:30
His willingness to chase back gave Coleman more licence to go forward. Maybe his illness was part of the problem.
Whoever we sign he remains an option on the right from the bench and in cup games. Could be particularly useful in away legs in Europa League.
All the best, Aaron.
3 Posted 11/07/2017 at 07:00:32
When you complete your comeback, there will be a welcome waiting for you at Goodison the likes of which you cannot imagine.
4 Posted 11/07/2017 at 07:16:29
With the squad being so short of wingers, the opportunity for him to cement his spot is about as good as it will ever be.
I'm pulling for you, big guy.
5 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:17:25
In a sport of self-obsessed players, his plight makes us realise some of them are only human.
6 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:39:23
7 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:39:27
Good to see him back.
9 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:44:33
10 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:46:14
11 Posted 11/07/2017 at 08:53:27
12 Posted 11/07/2017 at 09:06:51
14 Posted 11/07/2017 at 09:12:24
15 Posted 11/07/2017 at 09:15:57
Said it before, but for me, he's a better bet against lesser sides where we have more of the ball than Holgate, as a right wing back.
16 Posted 11/07/2017 at 09:53:34
When I was struck down by clinical depression some years ago, I could have slapped no end of people who said "What have you got to be unhappy about?" It seemed impossible to explain to them that depression isn't about being happy or unhappy, but is an illness that can strike anyone at any time.
I'm sure it was a situation Aaron found himself in more than once, especially when you consider his position as a highly paid professional footballer, doing something most people can only dream about.
Hopefully he is now free of whatever demons possessed his mind at the time and can go on to rebuild his life and career and enjoy some success and fulfilment now he's back in the fold with his friends and teammates. I have a suspicion that Koeman has been a strong support for Lennon during his absence. He has certainly always spoken in very positive and supportive terms about him since his illness was made public. I'd like to think so.
It would certainly be great to see him make his first appearance since his illness. Whether it's from the start or as a late sub, I'm sure he will be amazed at the warmth of the welcome he's likely to receive.
17 Posted 11/07/2017 at 09:59:25
18 Posted 11/07/2017 at 10:48:06
19 Posted 11/07/2017 at 10:56:04
20 Posted 11/07/2017 at 12:42:10
21 Posted 11/07/2017 at 13:28:08
Maybe he can recover some of the earlier form seen when he was on loan here. He was a very good player at Spurs a time back. There can be a real role for him in this squad this season.
22 Posted 11/07/2017 at 15:33:21
23 Posted 11/07/2017 at 17:45:10
24 Posted 11/07/2017 at 17:53:51
25 Posted 11/07/2017 at 18:03:30
Well done, lad. Would love to see a few cameo appearances from him in the League Cup and in Europe.
26 Posted 11/07/2017 at 18:10:36
Give it a week and Theresa May will ban all this!
27 Posted 11/07/2017 at 18:10:53
28 Posted 11/07/2017 at 18:15:53
29 Posted 11/07/2017 at 18:52:34
30 Posted 11/07/2017 at 19:52:34
Brian Porter (#16) – excellent post and very well articulated.
31 Posted 11/07/2017 at 20:45:58
32 Posted 11/07/2017 at 21:51:01
Many a true word...
33 Posted 11/07/2017 at 22:57:25
True grit and belief and fighting spirit. Made up and here's to future hopes and success at EFC, this season.
34 Posted 11/07/2017 at 23:05:46
As a Clinical Psychologist, I particularly liked this bit:
"It's important to emphasise that there is amazing help out there and anyone feeling anything out of the ordinary should seek support because it is great and good to talk."
As Freud said 'when someone speaks, it gets lighter.'
35 Posted 11/07/2017 at 23:06:36
I would love to see him play again, partly out of compassion and respect for him, but also because I think he is a decent footballer who could be very useful for us. The players we have signed this summer all have fight, leadership and the desire to win battles – in getting back to Finch Farm Aaron is demonstrating these qualities in his own way.
Brian Porter, in this and previous threads you have shared your own experience to shed light on mental health issues. Thank you for doing so.
36 Posted 11/07/2017 at 23:15:04
37 Posted 13/07/2017 at 01:17:43
38 Posted 21/07/2017 at 23:07:57
You explained about depression so well I felt no need to add much really but the bit about peoples attitudes rang a bell. I had the same reactions, people telling me to cheer up or thinking just because my life was fine on the surface, I should be thankful cos lots of people are worse off...
Anyway I imagined a lot more people thought because hes a highly paid footballer, Aaron didn't deserve much sympathy... however it seems I was wrong & so many fans have empathy & understanding about his illness. I'm so glad he seems back on track.
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