Puyol panicked at early retirement prospect
Barcelona defender Carles Puyol has revealed he feared he would be forced to hang up his boots due to injury in the past.
The experienced centre-back is recovering from an elbow injury, and has had his fair share of physical misfortune throughout his career.
"Injuries are the worst thing in football and I've had a few. I thought that one of them would force me to retire," Puyol told blog site 55dslstories.com.
"I worked day and night with my physio, Juanjo Brau, but couldn't recover. Some days it felt as though the discomfort had gone away but it was only temporary. It always returned.
"After four months I had to have surgery. The day after surgery we started working on my recovery, but I still felt the discomfort. That's when you start to think that maybe you'll never play again."
Puyol then revealed a trip to Ibiza helped him shrug off the injury in the end, much to his own delight.
"Juanjo told me that I needed a change of scenery. We went to Ibiza with my brother and my best friend and we continued training there until we decided it was time to start running: the moment of truth," he said.
"I completed an entire session without any pain. I realised that I could continue competing at the highest level. When I finished that training session I was as happy as when you win a title.
"In those 55 minutes I saw the light."