Tottenham full-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto feared being forced to quit football while recovering from his serious knee injury.
The 25-year-old, who was recently voted Most Improved Player by Spurs supporters after establishing himself under Harry Redknapp this season, was out for 18 months and revealed how he was treated alongside amputees in France.
"The hardest part of the injury was when the specialist said it might end my career," said the Cameroon international, who got injured at the start of 2007. "It made me doubt what was going to happen to me and it affected the way I am, my whole being.
"I spent about 10 months back in France, doing the first part of my rehab at a centre where there were people who had lost limbs.
"It was a very sobering experience for me because I was speaking to people who had their own personal stories and problems, and they certainly gave me hope for the future. It made me realise that although I had my injury problem, my situation could have been a lot worse."