Callum McFadzean has revealed the excruciating injury which forced him to withdraw from Scotland’s latest under-21 squad.
The Sheffield United defender, who expects to leave Bramall Lane at the end of the season, underwent surgery after tearing a testicle during a training session with the League One club.
McFadzean said: “We were playing some small-sided games when one of the lads studded me straight in my privates.
“They said it hadn’t ruptured for the first couple of days. I got a scan and could see some damage.
“They told me to come back the next day because they wanted a second opinion.
“It turned out I had a 2cm split in my left ball sack. I was taken into surgery on Thursday night and they cut me open.”
McFadzean added: “The scan had showed damage but they didn’t know what to expect. One surgeon told me before the op he had to tell me what the worst case scenario was. He said if they found it was quite damaged they’d have to remove it.
“For the first three days before the op I was in a lot of pain. It was the worst pain I’ve ever had.
“Coming away from surgery it was quite tender for the next couple of days as well. They’ve said I’ll be out for two or three weeks. There’s stitching in there and the last thing they want is for it to reopen.”
McFadzean had hoped to use the international fixtures against Northern Ireland and France to showcase his talents after failing to command a place in United manager Nigel Adkins’ plans.
“United have said they need to cut the squad and I’m out of contract,” McFadzean said. “I’ve been there since I was six and I need a fresh start. I can play left and right wing or left-back. I just want a new challenge and I’d never rule out coming to Scotland.”
Meanwhile, United’s under-21’s extended their unbeaten run to 16 matches with a 2-0 victory over Bolton Wanderers at Bramall Lane. Adkins was among the crowd as goals from Jake Wright and Shea Gordon dispatched the visitors from Lancashire while goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, who has recently been training with the first-team squad, also impressed.