Siem de Jong details the frightening experience of suffering a serious eye injury.
Newcastle United striker Siem de Jong has admitted that he had real concerns over his eyesight following the freak training-ground injury which left him with a split eyeball.
The luckless 27-year-old was rushed to hospital in January after a team-mate accidentally poked him in the eye during training, and the Dutchman has been out of action since.
It was the latest setback for De Jong, who was restricted to just one Premier League start last term as injury blighted his first season in England following a switch from Eredivisie giants Ajax in 2014.
However, the Netherlands international is now nearing a return to first-team duties.
“In the beginning I was worried,” he told the Magpies' official website. “That first day, I couldn’t see anything out of my eye.
“I went to the hospital, there was blood in my eye and I had laser treatment over the next few weeks to get it all fixed and now it’s all better.
“I can start training again so it’s good to be back on the pitch with the rest of my team-mates. Before, even though I was fit, I was not allowed to do anything. I haven’t trained for three or four weeks now but I’m getting the feeling of normal training again.”
Fit-again De Jong could prove key for Steve McClaren's side, who have 12 Premier League games in which to ensure their survival.
As it stands, Newcastle sit 18th in the table, behind Norwich City on goal difference, but the return of a striker - albeit one without a league goal this season - can surely do no harm.
Relegation battles often spawn unlikely heroes, and United will hope that De Jong can play his part in the coming months.