Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill has told Chris Sutton to take his time as he considers whether to call time on his career.
The veteran striker has spent five months on the sidelines with a serious eye problem which threatens to end his 15-year professional career.
Sutton is reluctant to retire after kick-starting his career since moving to Villa Park last October, but O'Neill has vowed not to rush the former Celtic and Chelsea hitman's decision.
"He's had the final reports back from another specialist and doesn't want to make a definite decision just yet," O'Neill told the club's official website.
"There's no rush. He can talk it over with his family and see how things stand later this summer.
"I think we missed him badly when he got injured. He was just coming to the fore and scored the winner at Everton.
"He gave us that quality we needed, and I believe it was no coincidence that his not playing coincided with our very poor run.
"We knew at the time he hurt himself against Manchester United that could be the case because of the influence he was having.
"He has the ability to keep the ball and play with other people, and I thought he was improving other people's games like Gabriel Agbonlahor and others.
"So it was a real shame he missed the rest of the season. We missed him right up until we got John Carew in January."