Paralympians inspire injured Swansea City star Neil Taylor
NEIL Taylor will take inspiration from the heroes of Britain's Paralympics team as he battles back to fitness.
The Swansea City defender was stretchered from the Liberty Stadium pitch last weekend, a fractured and dislocated ankle suffered against Sunderland ending his season after just two games.
He was later told the injury could have been career-threatening.
Taylor left hospital today after spending five days at Morriston Hospital.
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And after watching the Paralympics on TV from his hospital bed, the 23-year-old said: "Now that is real courage and heart.
"I'm obviously devastated about the injury, but if those athletes can overcome what they've had to face, then who am I to moan?
"I have to show the same determination and do it for myself.
"I'm mentally strong, which helps, and I've got the support of my family and a beautiful and healthy wife and daughter. Some other people haven't got that and I owe it to them to battle my way back.
"I've got a year to work on strengthening other parts of my body and come back like a new signing raring to go."
Taylor, who won't be able to put full weight on his leg for around three months, injured his ankle in a collision with Craig Gardner.
"It was a freak accident, one of those things," he added. "I have always been a tackling full-back and I will remain so.
"That's part of my game, to try to win the ball from people.
"I certainly don't apportion any blame on Craig. We both went in to win the ball — his momentum carried him forward and my momentum took me backwards. I couldn't get my foot out of the ground.
"My studs were stuck and the weight of him just popped the ankle out.
"I knew straight away something was wrong. When the pain started rushing to it I knew it was pretty bad.
"I'm not one to dwell on things. I've had a great year in the Premier League and played in the Olympics with Team GB, but I've always said in interviews that you've got to take it as it comes."
Meanwhile, striker Leroy Lita has joined Birmingham from Swansea on a three-month loan deal.
Lita, signed last summer from Middlesbrough, has yet to figure in a competitive game under Michael Laudrup.