AC Milan forward Antonio Cassano revealed that he faces a further six months on the sidelines as he recovers from heart surgery.
The Italy international was forced to undergo an emergency procedure after falling ill following Milan’s victory at Roma at the tail end of October.
It was hoped that he might be fit to return to action before the end of the season and thus force his way into the reckoning for Euro 2012.
However, the player has now revealed that it will be June before he is kicking a ball in anger again.
"I have to wait six months to play,” Cassano explained during an interview with Staffelli Valerio. “Until then, walk, walk, walk."
Cassano also admitted that the support of his Rossoneri team-mates has been overwhelming, and particularly that of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
“He’s one of my best friends,” the former Roma man said. “I have a great relationship with him and with all of Milan.”