Everton comeback king Andre Gomes is grateful for support from the football community after his successful playing return.
Gomes is back in action after fully recovering from a horror ankle injury suffered earlier this season.
Portugal teammate Cristiano Ronaldo and former Barcelona star Lionel Messi were among those in touch and Gomes told the Mirror: "Yeah, they were like unbelievable. I had a lot of messages from team-mates I had in the past and everybody was so incredible. I can not say an individual because I had so many good examples so I can not say just one or two.
“Everybody was so good to me. People like even Alan Shearer - and I didn't expect that for example. He was telling me, listen you know what I had a similar injury…at Goodison!"
He spoke to players who suffered similar injuries and they said the same. Go hard. “I had a trauma. I spoke with different people, like Danny Welbeck, he text me. Also, Djibril Cisse, and I was asking 'It's traumatic, we know, but what is the next step?'
“Once you are ready, if you go, you have to compete. If I don't compete then people will know and say: 'Now he is different', 'Maybe he is afraid' and 'Maybe he is not putting his foot in'.
“You can protect yourselves but 80% of the time you have to go hard, especially in the Premier League, the most competitive league in the world. I can't be different. I need to be the same guy I was before and go hard. In my first training I told my team-mates, Don't go easy on me.
“If you need to go hard, I will go hard as well, otherwise I will get injured again."