Liverpool youngster Joe Gomez has revealed he was left "devastated" after suffering a season-ending injury whilst on international duty.
The left-back took an innocuous-looking fall whilst representing England Under-21s against Kazakhstan in October, which resulted in him rupturing the anterior cruciate ligaments in his right knee.
The former Charlton Athletic defender was enjoying an impressive run in the first team and appeared to have adapted to the competitive nature of the Premier League.
Gomez admits he was left shell-shocked after suffering the setback.
"I was absolutely devastated," the 18-year-old told the Liverpool Echo.
"When I came back to Liverpool, I knew I wasn't going to be fit for the manager's first game at Tottenham but I was hoping I'd be back available before too long.
"The physio Chris [Morgan] and the doctor [Andy Massey] didn't say anything before the scan but my knee had swollen up and I think they knew straightaway.
"When they got the results, I could tell by the doctor's face that it wasn't good news. To be told it was my cruciate was tough to take."
Gomez says his spirits have been lifted by encouraging words from new manager Jurgen Klopp.
"When I came back the manager was waiting for me," he revealed.
"The first time I met him was when I'd just found out I'd done my ACL. He said if there was anything he could do for me and if I needed any help to speak to him.
"He was telling me to stay positive and that he was happy to wait for me to get fit again. It was nice to hear that.
"Little things like that make a massive difference. Hearing that helps you see light at the end of the tunnel.
"I've seen the manager every now and again since and he's been great. When someone says you're going to be out for such a long time you do worry whether there will be a way back."
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