Javier Zanetti insists career not over, will return from torn Achilles

Marco Luzzani

Despite a torn Achilles that will keep him out for at least eight months, 39-year-old Javier Zanetti says he will not retire.

Javier Zanetti says he will return from the torn Achilles tendon he suffered on Sunday and will not let the injury end his career. There was speculation that the 39-year-old might retire rather than attempt to come back from the serious injury that requires at least eight months of recovery time.

"My goal is to come back stronger than before, and I believe," Zanetti said on Inter's website. "I had to change tyres after so many miles... I'm sorry for how the season has gone.

"They still haven't given me the timescale involved, but my career certainly isn't over. What matters is healing well. What I want most is to be back with my teammates."

Zanetti went down in the 17th minute of Inter's 1-0 loss to Palermo on Sunday and was stretchered off the pitch. Inter manager Andrea Stramaccioni said after the match that he feared a torn Achilles and scans later in the day confirmed the tear.

If the normal eight-month recovery time holds, Zanetti will return around Christmas, when he will be 40 years old.

Zanetti is one of the greatest players in Inter history, having played a club record 834 games and holding the captaincy since 1999. He is also the most capped player in Argentina history.

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