Fiorentina legend Gabriel Batistuta says he is hoping “I can finally walk like a normal person again” after undergoing ankle surgery.
Batistuta has been plagued with mobility issues since retiring from football in 2005, but former Argentine striker has now gone under the knife in a bid to resolve them.
“I was crying from the pain so I asked a doctor to amputate my legs,” he told Corriere della Sera.
“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.
“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.”
The 50-year-old had no such problems as a player, scoring 242 goals for Fiorentina, Roma and Inter, as well as 54 for Argentina.
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