Giuseppe Rossi admits he’s “lost count” of the number of knee surgeries he’s had, but “I sacrificed too much” to consider quitting.
The Italian international’s career has been blighted by a series of knee problems, including three anterior cruciate ligament tears, a meniscus tear and an intra-articular ligament fissure.
The 31-year-old signed for Genoa in December but managed only one start, and after 10 appearances in total he wasn’t offered a new deal.
Rossi hasn’t managed over 30 games in a season since the 2010-11 campaign with Villarreal, and after 16 goals in 21 games for Fiorentina in 2013-14 he missed the entire following season.
“When I sit back and think about it, I get annoyed and you start going around in circles in your head,” the striker admitted to BBC Sport.
“Every injury has its own story - it took something away, if it's a World Cup, the European Cup, or a big transfer.
“But the dream doesn't stop and I am here today living the dream that I have always wanted to and keep trying to gain what I lost.
“How many surgeries have I had? Four… five… I’ve kind of lost count.
“Every time it happened when I was performing at a high level and was destined to have a great season - it has always stopped me from doing even greater things.
“It was tough and got lonely. But for me, thinking about what could have been was a waste of time. You get lost in between a lot of negative thoughts that can harm you psychologically.
“I had to keep my spirits up, say to myself all the work I was doing had a purpose. 'One day you will get what you want Giuseppe' - that happened when Genoa called.
“Did I consider quitting? I sacrificed too much to do that. I love this game so much, I could never leave it and say it is done.
“Nothing can take football away from me, it's my little baby, my love. I believe I deserve to be somewhere and unfortunately I am not there, not because of ability, but because of an injury.
“I will keep fighting and showing I am able to be where I should be.”
Rossi, who was born in New Jersey, is currently training with MLS outfit New York Red Bulls.
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