Football is a truly beautiful game (sometimes) but it’s also a fiercely competitive one, which burns brightly within the very top tier of the professional ranks right the way through to the lower amateur leagues.
That passion, will-to-win and never say die attitude is what makes football the game it is, and is why up and down the country every Saturday and Sunday afternoon, thousands of people grace the fields at their local parks and try their hardest to put that round ball of leather into a net.
However, sometimes that intensity and enthusiasm can boil over and tempers can flare and while referees do their best to control the match, crunching tackles, flying elbows and clash of heads are somewhat inevitable – whether you like it or not, injuries are part and parcel of football and sometimes, they can be truly horrific.
Check out our top five worst injuries in football:
- David Busst
Thought to be one of the worst football injuries of all time. During a match between Manchester United and Coventry, Sky Blue’s defender David Busst got sandwiched by two tackles from Brian McClair and Denis Irwin, fracturing his tibia and fibula on his right leg. According to reports, United’s goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel vomited having witnessed the incident. Busst underwent over 25 operations but due to complications he never returned to football.
- Alfe-Inge Haaland
It all started back in 1997, when Manchester United’s Roy Keane fell to the floor having suffered an injury to his anterior cruciate ligament. Haaland, who at the time was playing for Leeds believed Keane was feigning injury and stood over him yelling at him to get up. Keane never forgot this and waited to exact his revenge. Five years later, United played hosts to their rivals Manchester City who Haaland was now playing for. It was the perfect moment, and a stark reminder of the type of fouls and tackles that can happen in football. Haaland never played a full match again.
- Eduardo da Silva
This challenge, or should we say the result of this challenge was so horrendous that Sky Sports chose not to show replays of it. The Brazilian-born Croatian footballer who was playing for Arsenal at the time was on the receiving end of a flying tackle by Birmingham City defender, Martin Taylor. If da Silva’s leg had of been in the air at the time of impact, he may have got off lightly, but his leg was planted, resulting in a broken fibula and dislocated ankle – his sock was the only thing holding his foot together.
- Djibril Cisse
A reminder that it’s not necessarily another player that causes such injuries to occur. During the 2006 World Cup in Germany, Chinese captain, Zheng Zhi, tackled the French striker but it wasn’t the challenge that caused his tibia to break. As Cisse fell to the ground, his leg got caught in the turf and twisted in the opposite direction of where his body was falling. As a result, Cisse was ruled out of the World Cup. Thankfully he soon returned and played for many more years.
- Graeme Souness
There are no words to describe this challenge and the resulting pain. Just watch for yourself and prepare yourself to wince.
Insure4Sport have developed a football insurance package for individuals, teams and coaches. It’s designed to support those who suffer an injury whilst playing football, as well as providing legal liability should you happen to injure an opponent.