Date: 7th June 2007 at 9:42pm
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(Written by Anonymous Arab)

Nowadays, success can come far too early for professional footballers, with youngsters sometimes unable to cope with the sudden fame and fortune thrust upon them.

Some turn to drink, some to drugs, but ultimately it`s the football clubs that have to pick up the pieces when they eventually go off the rails.

It`s becoming very important for the older and more experienced players to set a good example, giving the young and impressionable players something to aspire towards.

Dundee United`s latest signing, Darren Dods is the perfect example of a true professional, who is committed to being the best he can be and for that reason, he takes his fitness very seriously.

30-year-old Dods is currently on holiday in the US, but is taking time out for his family break to take advantage of the glorious sunshine and get in some extra fitness training on the Miami beaches.

‘I’m staying in good shape over the break by taking advantage of Miami’s golden sands and going out for a run about three times a week,” admitted Dods earlier this week.

‘Mind you, I have to get up and go pretty early in the morning as it’s a bit cooler than later in the day. Gone are the days when players could take the close-season off and just report back and hope to get through it.”

‘Any new player at a club wants to make a good first impression and staying as fit as possible is one way of doing that.’

‘I knew that moving to Tannadice would be the right career step for me as soon as I spoke to Craig. I had three great years at Inverness but the time was right to move on. United are a big club in Scotland with a lot of ambition and I hope to be part of some successful times there.”

‘With the sort of signings they’ve been making recently, like the big Polish keeper, things are looking bright for the future. I’m sure we’ve got the guys to do well.’

‘I played against the likes of Jon Daly and Noel Hunt last season and had some fair old battles. So it’ll be nice to link up with them to see what we can achieve.’