Argentine striking legend and Fiorentina hero Gabriel Batistuta has had ankle surgery after being in so much pain he wanted his legs amputated.
Gabriel Batigol Batistuta, who had a career that spanned 17 years, 430 games and 238 goals retired back in 2005.
In an interview with Corriere Della Sera, he talks about the pain he suffered after his playing days were over, leaving him unable to even walk properly.
He has since undergone surgery, as the pain became unbearable.
“I was crying from the pain so I asked a doctor to amputate my legs.”
“I felt pain, pain and more pain. The operation was a solution I’d been chasing for at least 6-7 years.”
“In 40 days, once I remove the brace, we’ll know if the pain has disappeared and I can finally walk like a normal person again.”
“As soon as I stopped playing, I found my ankles to be in pieces.”
“Bone against bone, supporting a weight of 86-87kg: the slightest movement became agony.”
“I had the same problem as [Marco] Van Basten, who said enough was enough at 28 years of age.”
The pain eventually became too much and Batigol was in a desperate situation.
“I couldn’t get out of bed on some days. I’d be crying with anger and I said to myself: ‘It can’t go on like this.”
“I felt sick, so sick that I went to a doctor friend of mine and asked him to amputate my legs.”
“I prayed to him, I insisted. I told him that this was no longer life.”
Batistuta is most famous for donning the Viola of Fiorentina, where he became a local hero.
He also played for Roma and Inter, as well as representing his beloved Argentina.
The retired player has been inundated with best wishes and get well messages from his adoring fans around the world.
He took to social media with regular updates.
Gracias al Dr. Beat Hintermann y equipo por esta cirugía que me da la esperanza de volver a caminar con normalidad. A mis seguidores les cuento que estoy en plena rehabilitación, cuando tenga el alta volveré a la Argentina. Agradezco a mis incondicionales fans por el apoyo 💜⚽️💜 pic.twitter.com/K3Ii5gfmYf
— Gabriel Batistuta (@GBatistutaOK) October 3, 2019