Manchester United club captain Michael Carrick was forced to have a procedure on his heart after the midfielder had been struck down by dizzy spells.
Carrick underwent a cardiac ablation to correct an irregular heart rhythm after suffering a health scare during United's League Cup victory over Burton Albion in late September.
The 36 year-old took a funny turn during the second half of the 4-1 win, and although he was able to finish the 90 minutes, an ECG machine was sent down to United's dressing room by paramedics at the end of the game and Carrick tested as a precaution.
As reported by the Telegraph, Carrick subsequently wore a heart monitor in training, and although he was named among the substitutes for the next game against Southampton, problems persisted and he was referred to a cardiologist at the Alexandra hospital in Cheadle for more tests.
Carrick – who is contracted until the end of this season - is thought to have been left feeling "a bit down" by the situation, according to friends, but he is now close to full fitness and a return.
According to the Manchester United official website, in a statement released on his social media accounts, Carrick said: "I just want to clear up my situation as I've had quite a few people asking if I'm ok and why I haven't been fit over the last couple of months.
"After feeling strange during the second half of the Burton game in September, I underwent a series of tests. It turned out to be due to an irregular heart rhythm which has been fully investigated and I had a procedure called a Cardiac Ablation.
"I had to build up training steadily whilst being monitored closely but I feel fine now. I would like to reassure everyone that I'm healthy and back training hard with the team. I'm building up my fitness and aiming to be back in contention for selection soon. Thanks for your support."
It was established he required a cardiac ablation, which involves catheters being placed into a vein in the groin or wrist and gently moved in the correct position in the heart under local anaesthetic.
The exact area of the problem is pinpointed using an electrophysiology study with radiofrequency or freezing then used to destroy the affected area inside the heart that has caused the abnormal heart rhythm.
It is thought Carrick was given a full assessment around eight weeks later to establish that the procedure had been a success, although it limited the amount of training the player was able to do over that period.
The Burton game remains Carrick's only appearance so far this season but the club captain is thought to be targeting United's final Champions League game at home to CSKA Moscow on Tuesday week for his comeback. He has also been hampered by a calf problem and illness that has delayed his return.