Brentford midfielder Sam Saunders has compared the feeling of his freak Wembley injury to being shot in the leg by a sniper.
Saunders was playing for loan club Wycombe in the League Two play-off final when he collapsed in agony after taking his first touch, just seconds into the game.
Scans later revealed a tear in his calf which will disrupt the 31-year-old’s pre-season preparations.
Describing the moment he collapsed, Saunders told Brentford’s website: “I had a bit of tightness in the week but the warm-up was fine.
“Then the ball got played to me and I had to push off quickly and just felt an explosion in my calf.
“I was in shock and disbelief when I felt it. I tried to get up but it felt like someone had snipered me in the crowd.
“It’s never ideal to get injured but at least it’s over the summer so I’m not missing any more football. Holidays are overrated anyway!”
It was a further blow for Saunders, who had only returned to full fitness in November after 10 months out with a knee injury.
He made just five brief substitute appearances in the Championship for the Bees and revealed he asked for a loan move after becoming frustrated at sitting on the bench.
He said: “It was what I needed. I’d come back after being out for a long time and the boys were flying.
“I’d made a few appearances and felt I probably warranted more of an opportunity than I got.
“I asked to go out on loan. I played more in that two and a half months than I possibly did in the last 18. It was nice to get that buzz back.”