This weekend should see the return of Christian Benteke. His long injury lay-off has hindered the team since he was forced out after a session at Bodymoor Heath in April. He is set to make the bench this afternoon and this is a positive for a Villa side struggling to score.
We seem to have a number of injuries at the club and we are constantly missing players thanks to what is often branded a ‘slight niggle’. Ron Vlaar spends a fair share of his time on the injury table, regularly picking up ‘slight knocks’. The club captain has been out since late August and we are yet to discover the full details of his injury.
Is it the training regime that is causing an injury backlog? Are the medical staff treating players properly? Something needs to change at Bodymoor Heath to prevent injuries hindering the team’s performance to the extent that they currently do.
We have notably lost a number of players through incidents that have taken place on the training ground or, in Charles N’Zogbia’s case last season, nowhere near a football pitch. The real issue that I as a fan have is that this happens on more than just the odd occasion. It is a consistent thing and I’m sure that other fans struggle to get their heads around it.
Perhaps we are just in a situation where luck is not on our side but I believe that there is more to it than bad luck.
Libor Kozak is a good example to use. Kozak broke his leg in training last December, after a challenge by Ciaran Clark. That should not happen at any football club, let alone a Premier League one. Kozak’s recovery was supposedly going ‘well’, according to the club, but he has had another operation this week that is likely to rule him out until after Christmas. Was he rushed back by the medical team?
What I find most frustrating is the fact that the club does not disclose information regarding players’ injuries through their channels. It is up to the press to ask questions about players – but that is wrong. When we hear about players’ injuries directly from the club, it is usually long after any press coverage of the matter.
The manager needs to be honest about situations affecting the first team but isn’t. Instead, it always seems that a player has been left out rather than side-lined through injury. This has to change.
I believe that the injury situation is a result of the two main factors that I have mentioned – the training regime and ineffective treatment by medical staff – but that it is also affected by some bad luck, such as Christian Benteke’s injury.