Recently retired Tottenham
defender Ledley King has revealed that he suffered the knee injury that troubled him throughout his career during his senior debut.
King made his bow for Spurs nearly 13 years ago when he appeared against Derby County at Pride Park in October 1999.
During that match, the centre-back was on the receiving end of a tackle by Rory Delap that eventually resulted in King requiring surgery on his left knee, which frequently held him back thereafter.
"It's amazing that I played as long as I did really when I think back to that game at Pride Park," King told The Sun
"It was my first start for Spurs, I was playing in midfield and after about 30 seconds I was clattered by Rory Delap.
"I just about managed to complete the game but I needed an operation on my left knee afterwards which kept me out for six weeks. I've been having operations on that knee ever since.
"You could say that was the start of the end and it was only four days after my 19th birthday."
King admitted that although he had eventually come to terms with his chronic injury problems, he still feels regret over the career he could have had without them.
"I quickly grasped that I was never going to be as good as I wanted to be but I still felt I could be very good," he explained.