AC Milan striker Ronaldo admitted that he does not know whether he will be able to play again after undergoing major knee surgery for the third time in his career. "I have the will to carry on playing, this is what my heart is telling me to do. But my body is giving me signs that it is tiring and needs rest," the Brazilian said. "I know that physically and mentally it will be very hard. If at the end of the day, I have recovered and can play again, fine. If not, it will be a very hard decision to make but it will have to be the decision."
Ronaldo, a two-time World Cup winner and
three-time FIFA World Player of the Year, ruptured the tendon in his left knee last Wednesday playing in a 1-1 draw against Livorno. He sustained similar injuries while playing for Inter Milan in 1999
and 2000, and did not recover until just before the World Cup in 2002. The AC Milan striker's current contract expires in June, leaving his future with the Italian club in doubt. "I don't think it's
the right time to talk about a new contract," Ronaldo said. "I'm sorry that things have worked out like this."
The player's surgeon said he wouldn't be able to run for five months and would
unable to train for nine months. "Anything can happen in the next three months because surgery is not an exact science," the surgeon said. "The recovery will not depend on Ronaldo for the first six
months. It will all depend on him afterward. Psychologically, he is a remarkable man."