Javier Zanetti insists he has no intention of hanging up his boots.
The Argentine legend snapped his Achilles tendon during the disappointing 1-0 defeat at Palermo last weekend, a result which all but ends Internazionale’s slim hopes of UEFA Champions League football next season. With just four matches remaining in the Serie A campaign, the Nerazzurri are nine points behind their San Siro rivals Milan.
Zanetti is due to go under the knife on Tuesday, which will be followed by a period of four weeks on crutches before he can begin his rehabilitation. Although it is yet to be confirmed, early indications from Sky Sports Italia claim he will be sidelined until next January.
As the player will by this time be 40-years-old, some pundits have questioned whether he will play for his beloved club again. But Zanetti, who has been at Inter since 1995 and has helped them to five league titles, a Champions League and a UEFA Cup success, insists he will do all he can to ensure he makes a successful return to action.
“I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion,” he told Inter Channel. “I knew immediately that it was serious. But it has happened, it was an unlucky day. It comes with the job and it has 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 per cent fit. 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.”