Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has revealed that he has played with a metallic plate in his right foot for nine years.
The 31-year-old had an operation last week after suffering a repeat of a previous hairline fracture of the metatarsal in his left foot.
Neuer is now expected to miss the remainder of 2017, and has explained that he first sustained a similar injury while playing for Schalke.
"I had the same injury while at Schalke in 2008," Neuer told Sport Bild. "Back then, a metal plate was inserted which is still in.
"I've never had a problem and feel comfortable with it."
And Neuer added that he has no qualms about leaving in the plate in order to prolong his playing career.
"I'm all for leaving everything in during my career in order to avoid unnecessary absences," he said.
Neuer is now set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines, which will come as a considerable blow for the Bundesliga champions.
"I spoke with him just now -- he's doing fine and the operation went well," coach Carlo Ancelotti said last week, quoted by ESPN.
"He'll come back in January, he needs some rest and after that we will prepare him for the second half of the season.
"We made the decision together with the player, the training staff and the doctors. We wanted to take our time and be careful -- we thought he was ready."