Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel feared the worse when he suffered a horrific knee injury against Manchester City last weekend and admitted: "I thought my career was over."
The injured centre-back said: "The pain was unbearable. I can't remember a lot about the moment - but it was terrible. I thought that was the end for me.
"I have never suffered anything like that before but I remained conscious and they gave me oxygen to help with the pain.
"I was in shock for a while but now I am coming to terms with what happened. It hurts still but things are getting better.
"I almost ripped the ligament fully - and if I had done that, I would have been out for eight months. But now it will be more like eight weeks if I'm lucky, when I should be able to start training again."
The 23-year-old was eventually told that he would not need surgery.
Liverpool spokesman Ian Cotton said: "Martin was examined by a specialist today, who confirmed the player does not require surgery and is expected to be back playing by Christmas."