Brighton & Hove Albion left-back Gaetan Bong has proved to be a cut above after playing through the pain barrier against Leeds United and Bristol City this week.
The charismatic defender suffered a gash on his left foot at Elland Road last week, which required treatment at the end of the match - which left him needing stitches and his teammate in stitches!
Bong, who stayed on the pitch and created Bobby Zamora's first goal of his second spell at the Albion, said, "It happened after 20 minutes, and I was playing and running with one foot.
"I was thinking about coming off, but I saw that GG [Gordon Greer] and Liam Rosenior had problems so I decided to wait until half time.
"I took some pills for the pain and I said I am okay for 45 minutes more and then the game was finished. The most important thing was that I played and we won.
"I was happy with the ball because it was for Bobby. A lot of players can have a chance like that, but won't score. He is a great player because he doesn't need a lot of chances or minutes.
"He did well and produced at a good moment; that goal was very important. I gave him the ball and one chance for him to score his first goal and enjoy it.
"I don't remember how many stitches I had at the end, but I remember that the gaffer was speaking and I was crying! All the lads were laughing at me, but it was painful. Thankfully it's fine now."
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Bong is fit for the visit of Preston North End today, and recovered to play on Tuesday against Bristol City, but needed a painkilling injection before the game, and revealed he was desperate to play, and help maintain the winning start.
"I tried to run the maximum I could going straight, without changing direction too much. If you are a professional, you know what you can do. If I thought I couldn't have played, I would have said, no it's too much.
"It's physical [the Championship], but it's football and it's nobody’s fault. You just have to keep going and I wanted to be out on the pitch with the lads because we are on this run.
"I can't tell you the key, or the secret, but the only thing that I do know is everyone is looking in the same direction, everyone is fighting for each other and if someone makes a mistake, we just say okay we put it aside.
"We keep going because it's what you have to do. When we're on the pitch we work hard and give the maximum to win, we arrive with the ambition to win every game, but we also respect the other team. We have this confidence, that’s maybe the key."
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