As Luke Shaw rejoins the England squad this week, the Manchester United defender has revealed how he almost lost his leg three years ago after a double fracture.
The 23-year-old sustained the injury in a Champions League group match in September 2015 after being clattered by PSV Eindhoven’s Hector Moreno in a ‘very bad tackle,’ as described at the time by Louis van Gaal, then manager at Old Trafford.
Listening to the account of his injury at St George’s Park on Tuesday, it was clear to see how not only did the world’s most expensive teenage player at the time come close to losing his career as a professional footballer, but also losing his right leg.
The surgeon removed two blood clots after he opened up Shaw’s leg revealing potential complications had he flown back to Manchester with those clots. The serious injury has left the player with two severe scars.
‘I was really close to losing my leg,’ he said. ‘I didn’t know that until six months later when the doctor told me.
‘At the time, they were thinking about flying me back. If I’d flown back, I would probably have lost my leg because of the blood clots.
‘I’ve got two scars down my leg where they had to cut it open and pull them out, the clots.
‘I feel really strong now. My right leg is as it was before the break. But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t sometimes think about stopping playing football.
‘That was during my leg break. I had a very serious injury and it was very tough at times. I never sat there, speaking with my family, saying I wanted to finish.
‘It was frustrating, but I came out the other side. My family played a massive part in that. I had a lot of good people around me, friends and family, who helped me through it.
‘Ultimately this is what I want to be doing, playing in the biggest games possible and winning trophies. That is my motivation. I want to be recognised as one of the best full backs in the world.’