Some players are capable of the most outrageous things on the field. Whether it is a full on rabona or a jinking run, some footballers have the world at their feet. On the other hand, there are those who are at the mercy of some full blown tackles.
It may be called the beautiful game but what goes on the field certainly stays on it. At times, it may be a case of eleven versus eleven but only one incident may affect a player’s career in an instant. In fact, sports, as well as injuries suffered have a deep connection with football. After all, each club possesses a number of different people who specifically deal with a host of injuries.
This includes the likes of experienced masseurs not to mention physiotherapists who have to treat individual players. From the moment they are up on the table, players are in the hands of expert professionals. They are reliant on them to provide nothing but the best care and attention to fractured limbs, twisted ankles and more. The road to rehabilitation may be a long and difficult one for many, especially after a hideous tackle.
Take for example the case of Edgar Andrade. Whilst plying his trade in the Mexican soccer league, he was taking part in a game between Cruz Azul and Tecos UAG. Unfortunately, Andrade sustained an extremely serious injury that’s more likely than not to send a shiver down one’s spine. Andrade was involved in a horrific fracture and ankle twist after colliding with a player after a tackle. After months of care, he managed to play again but he was not the only one to end up on the deck. Be prepared for the top 10 worst football injuries of all time.
10 Jacob Olesen
Born in Denmark, striker Jacob Olesen was on the receiving end of a nasty injury whilst playing in the Danish Superliga. His team Viborg FF was ensconced in a match until the moment he picked up a terrible dislocation. His left ankle was affected so badly that his leg was literally hanging by a thread. This particular game took place right at the beginning of the 2006-07 season and as a result Olesen was out of the game for more than five months.
9 Kieron Dyer
Considered to be one of the most crocked players of all time, former Queens Park Rangers and West Ham man Kieron Dyer has had more than nine lives. The midfielder played for a host of other clubs including Newcastle United and Bristol Rovers. It was at the latter where Dyer was to suffer one of his worst injuries during his playing career. Dyer did have bags of potential at the start and managed to break into the England squad. This was in spite of the fact that he suffered from several niggling injuries along the way. However, as soon as he was on the road to recovery something else would blight his path. It was in August 2007 when Dyer experienced a broken right leg whilst playing in the lower leagues for Bristol Rovers.
8 Henrik Larsson
Ex-Red Devil striker Henrik Larsson was involved in a nasty collision back in 1999. The former Celtic Striker was renowned for his striking prowess under the helm of Martin O’Neil. In the autumn of his career, Larsson managed to head south and join Manchester United in a successful three month period. He scored three goals in thirteen games for United during the 2006-07 and even received special dispensation to gain a League medal. Yet it was a severe leg injury that was to dampen his spirits. After a period of eight months on the side-lines after that double leg break against Lyon, he recovered successfully to represent his country at Euro 2000.
7 Luc Nilis
Former World Cup star for Belgium and ex-Premier League player Luc Nilis had a terrible experience in English football. He played in the Belgian 11 which was one of the best the country had produced for some 20 years. Nilis was fortunate enough to make the move to the English Premier League with Aston Villa. However, this was to end abruptly for the midfield maestro. It took place in September 2000 when Nilis was playing for the Villains against Ipswich Town. Within less than five minutes of the kick-off he collided with goalkeeper Richard Wright. Consequently, collision resulted in double knee fracture. It was too much and Nilis had to retire immediately from the injury.
6 Ewald Lienen
One of the most iconic photographs of the lot was captured when Ewald Lienen was on the other end of a sliding tackle. This took place in the German Bundesliga in August 1981. This was as a result of the Arminia Bielefield player being tackled by an opposing Werder Bremen defender. The injury caused a 25cm long and 5cm deep gash that actually exposed the player’s leg not to mention bone. This was a tackle but not as we know it as the gash was revealed for everyone to see. For Werder Bremen defender Norbert Siegmann, it was certainly a case of too little too late. In the return fixture some four weeks later, Siegmann also received a number of death threats for his misdemeanor. Yet, the incident was soon put to bed thereafter as Siegmann apologized in a letter to Lienen for his actions.
5 Djibril Cisse
The body has not been so kind at all to former French international Djibril Cisse. The former striker has suffered not one but two incredibly nasty leg breaks during his playing career. This has seen him play for Bastia, Liverpool and Queens Park Rangers among others. The first incident happened in 2006 when Cisse was playing in a harmless friendly international game. He fractured his right leg after a scything tackle by an opposing member of the Shandong Luneng team. In addition to this, Cisse was involved in another awful tackle when playing for Liverpool. The Merseysiders faced Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park and Cisse was to come off the worst again after an innocent tackle by Jay McEveley. The diagnosis wasn’t great and Cisse was out after a fracture of the tibia and fibula.
4 Luciano Almeida
Across the waters to South America and Brazilian football is also no stranger to nasty injuries. This affected one Luciano Almeida whilst being involved in a game between Botafogo and Flamengo. 2007 was not to be his particular year as the tackle ensured he was to be out of the game for a long period. His ankle was almost twisted the other way as Almeida writhed around in agony on the pitch. He was out of action for nearly six months before he made a full recovery. At the grand old age of 39, Almeida is still lacing up his boots and currently plays for Brazilian team Caxias.
3 Inigo Diaz De Cerio
Spanish player Iñigo Díaz de Cerio didn’t recover for a full 12 months after his tackle ensured he spent more time on the physio bench than the real one. This happened after he collided with Zigor who was playing for SD Eibar at the time. De Cerio’s right leg was completely shattered and he suffered a broken tibia and fibula. There was no choice left but to endure an operation which turned out to be successful in the long term. This did not deter De Cerio from extending his playing career where he turned out for Athletic Bilbao and Numancia.
2 Dean Ashton
Arguably one of the most gifted players never to fulfill his potential, Dean Ashton’s career was cut short. The English marksman started his career off at Crewe Alexandra where he was soon picked up for his natural goal scoring abilities. He moved on to Norwich City where he went from strength to strength and was an influence on and off the pitch. Ashton also managed to break through into the English national side but was only able to make one appearance. The pinnacle of his career saw Ashton make a multi-million dollar move to West Ham United. Unfortunately, it all came crashing down for Ashton in 2006 where he suffered a broken ankle. This happened whilst Ashton was on duty for England and went into a tackle with Shaun Wright-Phillips. Ashton came off the worse and his ankle was completely shattered. The damage was so severe that he lost the majority of cartilage in his actual ankle. On the guidance of Ashton’s surgeon, he had no alternative but to have his ankle bones completely fused. He was able to overcome this particular obstacle and managed to play on for another season despite the niggling issues. Yet at just the tender age of 26 years old, Ashton had no choice but to retire from the game he loved.
1 David Busst
In 1996, David Busst’s career was to change overnight. The former Coventry City defender had gone up for a corner in a game at Old Trafford against Manchester United. At the Theatre of Dreams, United’s team featured the likes of Eric Cantona and the Great Dane Peter Schmeichel. It was the latter who tipped Ally Pickering’s corner into the patch of Busst who became tangled in a melee to prod the ball into the net. A melee ensued and Busst’s leg became entrapped. The injury was so gruesome that it led to Schmeichel throwing up on the pitch. Meanwhile, blood was everywhere and it took an incredible ten minutes for grounds men to clear the blood from the turf. The big goalkeeper received counselling as a result of the impact of Busst’s injury. At one point, the former Sky Blues defender had to have nearly 25 operations on his leg, whilst he may have even lost it. Serious compound fractures in the two major bones in the lower part of his right leg ensured Busst was in hospital for quite some time. Whilst he was under medical supervision and to add insult to injury, he contracted a nasty MRSA virus which forced him to eventually retire.