QPR boss Neil Warnock has promised to give Kieron Dyer another opportunity to prove he can still perform at the very highest level.
Dyer underwent foot surgery on Monday to repair ligament damage aggravated during an aborted reserve team comeback last week and has been ruled out for the rest of the campaign.
The 32-year-old former England midfielder has not played a competitive game for Rangers since the opening day of the season, when he was stretchered off after five minutes with the initial problem.
Dyer's career has been hampered by a succession of serious injuries but while Warnock admits he thought the former England midfielder might hang up his boots, he refuses to bet against a successful comeback.
"I don't honestly know now (if he can still make an impact at this level)," he said.
"I honestly don't know that. But if anyone can he can, because he's so determined.
"I thought that he might consider his future, but having spoken to him he will try to show me in pre-season that he warrants a contract.
"He's not money-motivated. It's not as if we have to pay him a fortune. The lad wants to play football, which is like a breath of fresh air.
"I would not write him off, but it must be soul-destroying to go through what he has over the past few years.
"It's a bitter blow. The day it happened I went into the dressing room and he was distraught.
"We have to look after him and give him an opportunity - he deserves that."