MILAN - Captain Javier Zanetti spoke to Inter Channel's One O'clock News on the phone, a day on from injuring his left achilles against Palermo.
Read what the skipper had to say, in full, here on inter.it:
You've received so many messages and good wishes from everyone following what can only be described as the second serious injury of your career...
"Yes, I know. I thank all the supporters, my team-mates and everyone that has offered their support at this time. These things happen, it comes with the job. After my operation I need to start thinking about physio so I can return to action. That's what I've got in my mind, I'll do everything in good time to make sure the injury heals well and then I'll be available for any eventuality."
Yesterday, outside the Policlinico San Matteo hospital in Pavia, you said you felt real pain when you suffered the injury. What were you thinking at that moment?
"I knew immediately that it was serious and it was maybe my achilles. But it's happened, it was an unlucky day. As I've said, it comes with the job and it's come at this stage of my career, when I'm nearly 40. Thankfully I've not had many serious injuries over the course of my career, this is perhaps the first. I'll take my time, try to recover and, above all, to return 100% fit."
What would you say to those who have suggested that it will be difficult to come back aged 40?
"I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I'll say it again: my aim is to recover, undergo physio with the medical staff, which is the one of the best around. Then, when I feel better, I'll try to return to action. I think that after a career like mine, I'd like to at least play once more in front of my fans. And I hope it's more than one."
All of your team-mates seemed really shocked by what happened: have you said anything to them?
"All my team-mates showed great support and they were very sad about what happened. I said it yesterday in Pavia. I thank everyone for the support they've shown me but now it's time to stay with the lads, especially as it's the end of the season, which is not easy, every point is vital. They need our support, I'll be an extra fan and I'm sure they'll give everything to secure a spot in the Europa League."
Well-wishers have also included many opponents, coaches, and people from all over football. Does that make you realise that you've done something special in your career, besides the trophies you've won?
"Yes, I think this is the most important thing. I believe people have appreciated the way I've conducted myself throughout my career, be it on or off the field. And this support from the entire football family really brings me great pride."
Inter Channel will be dedicated to you all week. We'll show all the matches you scored in. Can you tell us where you'd like us to start?
"The final in Paris, my first trophy and an important goal. Then you decide, I've not got many but all my goals felt great and were important. I'd like to say thank you for the affection you and all the Inter fans have shown, you've made me feel like a member of the family from the moment I joined the club."