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Doncaster Rovers: Liquid nitrogen? Ice baths? What is the secret to James Coppinger’s longevity?

James Coppinger
James Coppinger

Superstar and serial winner Cristiano Ronaldo, aged 33, might rely on liquid nitrogen treatment and ice baths at 3am to maintain his fitness and physique.

But Doncaster Rovers’ own superman James Coppinger insists the key to his own longevity is happiness.

Coppinger, who signed a new one-year deal with Doncaster on Friday, will turn 38 in January.

But don’t try telling him to slow down.

When Rovers return to pre-season training next month, look out for Coppinger leading the way and setting the pace.

He is adamant there are no hidden secrets behind his age-defining qualities.

He says a positive mindset is key to his prolonged career.

“I’ll be honest, I wish I had stories like Ronaldo,” said Coppinger, on the Real Madrid man’s cutting edge techniques.

“But I genuinely don’t.

“I think when you’re a specimen like he is and to maintain the level of performance that he has to - and I’m not saying I don’t - to perform at the “very highest level I think you have to do things like that to keep yourself going.

“But for me personally it’s about maintaining my happiness.

“I’ve always said that.

“As soon as I lose that enthusiasm and that desire to play football then I’ll stop playing.”

He added: “I genuinely haven’t got any secrets!

“It’s always been more of a mental thing for me.

“I’ve seen players pack in for that reason and talk themselves into retirement. People think you’re ‘supposed’ to finish at 34 or 35.

“They’re telling themselves that their legs have gone and they can’t do this and they can’t do that, and then what happens is that they end up not being able to do it.

“For me that’s never been the case.

“I’ve always done the opposite.

“I think I’m getting faster.

“Whether I’m actually getting faster is up to the people who are watching me to decide.

“But if I’m telling myself I’m getting faster I end up thinking I’m getting faster.”