AC Milan centre-back Alessandro Nesta denied that he will quit football at the end of the season, as had previously been reported in the Italian press.
Having missed almost all the 2008/09 season due to a persistent back injury and having also been out for parts of this season, speculation mounted that the veteran would be considering calling it a day. It is already five years since he announced his international retirement in a bid to prolong his club playing days. But now he claims those are not up yet.
"I didn't say that I would quit at the end of the season," Nesta told Milan Channel. "I was asked at what point of my career I was at and I said that I'm 35 and almost at the end, but not at the end.
"I hope to keep playing even if I probably can't play in every game like this year. I'm very satisfied because this year I've played a lot but maybe I won't be able to play every three days any more. We'll see what happens, but I'm still available and I'll always give my all until one day, like everyone, I stop. But not at the end of this season."
Nesta also revealed that he has his coach Massimiliano Allegri to thank for allowing him to take more recovery time after games.
"I'm lucky to have a coach who leaves me to manage myself," he said. "After games I have a bit of pain which I try to get rid of in the following days by resting, only to then push a bit harder in training in the days leading up to a game."