Branislav Ivanovic played 90 minutes against Manchester City with an open wound and dosed up on painkillers, he has revealed.
The big Chelsea fullback, who suffered a nasty gash to his foot in midweek against Liverpool, said his foot was so swollen it was not possible to stitch the wound shut – leaving him to play through the pain.
“I think for the next game it will be OK,” said Ivanovic. “This game I played with a lot anaesthetic but it’s fine. The wound is open but it will be OK.”
Asked if it had been stitched-up he said: “Not really, because they didn’t want to close the wound because of the inflammation. But it’s fine. It was really painful and during the game there was a lot of swelling like any wound but it’s alright.”
Immediately after the Liverpool game, boss Jose Mourinho had insisted Ivanovic's boot should be taken down to the Chelsea academy, full of blood as it was, to display the Serbian's fight and commitment to the team.
On those comments, the 30-year-old said he was proud to have the support of his manager, but was characteristically modest.
He said: “Yeah, it’s nice but I think a lot of guys in this squad have played on in that way and I was just a little bit unlucky with my foot. There’s was a lot of blood, but I know and I remember that a lot of guys play with blood on their face and all these things.
“This is the good thing to show how we have to be as professionals. I would not really make a big deal of this, I’m not different to them.”