David Silva says a punishing Premier League season is forcing him to play through the pain barrier due to an ongoing ankle injury.
The Manchester City midfielder - who has played 37 games in all competitions for Roberto Mancini's table-toppers this season - underwent an operation in 2008, but his ankle continues to give him problems.
But the 26-year-old, who has netted five goals this campaign, is happy to put the team first as City chase their first ever Premier League title.
"This ankle, it is something that I have had problems with for years and years," says Silva. "Every day, I have to look after it. It's not 100 per cent, but I just have to deal with it.
"Playing all of these games in England is hard, so it is impossible, totally impossible, to be completely 100 per cent all the time.
"When I was at Valencia, I had an operation on it shortly after Euro 2008. For some reason, I always seem to get knocks and problems in the same area."
The Spain international added in the Daily Telegraph: "All you can do is try to be fit enough to play as often as possible. It is draining, but the important thing is to focus on the end of the season and winning the Premier League.
"After so many years as a professional footballer, you realise that it's all about the team."