Godfrey set for three-month recovery following surgery

08/08/2022 40comments  |  Jump to last

Ben Godfrey has had an operation on his fractured tibia and is expected to be sidelined until early November as he recovers.

Everton have confirmed he underwent surgery to correct the injury he sustained early in Saturday's Premier League match against Chelsea which saw him stretchered off the pitch.

Meanwhile, Yerry Mina is undergoing further tests to assess the extent of the ankle ligament damage he suffered later in the game. He will see a specialist this week.

The Colombian pulled up with a non-contact injury and had to be replaced with 20 minutes of the 1-0 defeat to go, the latest set-back for a player who only managed 11 appearances last season because of a succession of injury issues.


Reader Comments (40)

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Ian Bennett
1 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:27:33
Speedy recovery. Need to get him settled into that back 3 with Coady & Tarkowski.
Mike Gaynes
2 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:34:34
Lyndon, are you sure? The text I just got from the club says it was his fibula, not his tibia. The latter is much more serious. As Barkley and Coleman will testify.
Si Cooper
3 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:38:03
Hopefully the predicted recovery time indicates this was a simple job to get the bone lined up and it should heal without any weakness.
He’s young enough that he should heal quickly, old enough that he will have finished growing, and in the best profession for top class treatment.
Tony Everan
4 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:38:38
Fibula according to the club website.

Three months so that means he will be targeting a Boxing Day comeback. Good luck Ben.

A bit geeky... The fibula, sometimes called the calf bone, is smaller than the tibia and runs beside it. The top end of the fibula is located below the knee joint but is not part of the joint itself. The lower end of the fibula forms the outer part of the ankle joint.

Mike Gaynes
5 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:40:21
"Ben Godfrey underwent successful surgery this morning on the fractured fibula he sustained..." - Club site
Michael Kenrick
6 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:49:08
And 6 weeks becomes 3 months... just like that.

Still can't get over how incredibly stupid the entire episode was. Put me in a seriously bad state of mind for the rest of the game... and the rest of the weekend... in fact, I'm still fuming at the utter stupidity of it all.

But it does come down to your personal philosophy: accidents happen and are part of football. Or accidents happen for very specific reasons – many, if not all of which are entirely avoidable.

Yes, it's a contact sport (or at least it was) and diving in shows commitment and desire – qualities we admire in our players. But being utterly reckless – especially when you are trying to rectify a stupid mistake – is just asking for trouble.

Isn't this something you spend hours on the training pitch learning to avoid? The potential consequences are just so incredibly serious for the player... I guess I just don't get it.

Frank Kearns
7 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:52:42
Self-inflicted wound? Hope he’s not being paid and is funding his own medical bills - tongue firmly in cheek before I get ripped a new arsehole
Mike Gaynes
8 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:56:12
Michael, to offer him a faint defense, I'm quite certain he could never have imagined breaking his leg on that tackle. I mean, how many times does that actually happen?

I can't remember the last time I saw it. He was a bit frantic, which is a situation that doesn't come up on the training ground, and it happened. Two mistakes, and then an accident. Horrible.

Si Cooper
9 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:56:15
Mike, it was a weird one to interpret from the TV. I couldn’t see the very heavy lateral blow you would expect for a tibial break.

I do have a bit of a ‘morbid’ curiosity over sporting injuries (I guess I like to compare my own experiences to other cases). I thought it looked like he caught his studs which severely rolled his ankle.

I tend to forget that when I dislocated my ankle, the orthopaedic surgeon was surprised the bone hadn’t broken first. Fibula seems much more likely. I believe either lateral or spiral forces can cause those. I have seen accounts of shearing fractures occurring on the tibial processes though.

Don’t know the reason but they tend not to release massive amounts of information about these injuries and the operations. Patient confidentiality perhaps?

I am concerned the extended period of hot, dry weather this year may have left the pitches more abruptly grippy / unyielding than usual.

Dale Self
10 Posted 08/08/2022 at 18:58:39
At least the side didn't immediately shrink. Not sure if the crowd helped or what but they did seem to get into Chelsea's third with some intent about 3 or 4 times shortly after the injury. In the past they might have folded like a taco right then and there.
Michael Kenrick
11 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:15:28
Yea, Mike, you can rationalize it away as being a very rare set of circumstances.

I just wonder how much training they are given regarding coming in laterally at full speed to dispossess a player about to shoot on goal? With the added juice here that, if he scores, it's Godfrey's fault — 100%.

I watched the original replays but I can't really tell the leg positions at the point of impact (the Squeamish Rule prevents any meaningful analysis of what really happened, as UK TV immediately embargo any replays, fucken wimps).

I would imagine he had to strike Havertz with some serious force but he didn't need a lot of treatment. Not sure I buy this "Catching his studs in the turf" business. He would have spun head over heels at that speed.

Nobody seems very interested in accident analysis with the intention of learning and prevention. That really puzzles me. But as you say, no one expects to get injured in this way. Perhaps that's because no-one has told them – if you do this, then you run a serious risk of breaking a leg!

Jay Harris
12 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:24:49
So the officials are at fault for Ben,s injury in not spotting the ball well out of play and for not spotting the ex rs dive to get the free kick that led to the pen.
Will Mabon
13 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:52:01
Being to the rear of the leg, fibula breaks are usually a result of flex stress as opposed to impact. The mechanics of the lower leg are such that the fibula often breaks sacrificially in lieu of the tibia. Single breaks are usually low down on the bone, or at least in the lower half.

The fibula contributes little to lower leg strength and integrity. It does serve to guide, shape and protect the lower leg muscles. The leg can function fine with it detached at the lower ankle for normal purposes. Less likely in a top-level athlete.

There are types and grades of bone breaks, and levels of possible associated damage to muscles, tendons, arteries, veins, plus disruption from swelling - so the level of recovery and time involved can vary quite widely.

The physical fix of the bone itself is (usually) straightforward. If Godfrey heals well and has had a "lucky" type of break, he could be back training relatively early. Fingers crossed!

Micheal - catching the studs in the turf with the leg at a shallow angle and the force of the body weight at high speed behind it, is a classic way to break the fibula: ask me how I know...

Ray Smith
14 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:52:56
Frank 7

Are you real?

Get a grip,are you a true blue?

Peter Moore
15 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:53:24
Sorry wrong thread, Looking for TW Golf Day thread and can't find it. Think it is 16th September but looking for details.
Danny O’Neill
16 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:57:59
I watched it a few times. I think it's a combination of how his leg sticks in the turf and possibly the resulting downward pressure from the impact with the Chelsea player. Hard to tell, but that was my take.

He had to try and recover the situation and we wouldn't have expected anything less.

Speedy recovery Ben.

Andy Meighan
17 Posted 08/08/2022 at 19:59:21
Harsh on the lad it really is. Full-blooded defender who's as hard as nails. Don't get the slagging off of the kid I really don't.

Not the complete player yet but he's getting there. Speedy recovery Ben

Rob Halligan
18 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:09:04
If he is targeting early November to start training, then he won’t be missing hardly any games between early November, and, if as Tony # 4 says, he will be looking at Boxing Day as his comeback game, due to the suspension of the Premier League due to the World Cup.

So a total of hopefully about 15 games he will miss. Could have been far worse, I suppose.

Derek Knox
19 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:14:20
Peter @ 15, you are right, I have just checked, and the post seems to have disappeared with the changeover to new server. I will try and contact Lyndon or Michael to get it re-inserted. Yes it is getting closer, soon to be upon us ! ⛳💙
Jim Bennings
20 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:17:05
Back by January, more or less, then I'm guessing?
Will Mabon
21 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:19:40
Jim, he might surprise us.
Habib Erkan Jr
22 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:27:24
Wish him a speedy recovery and back in the squad after the World Cup fiasco (I mean tournament).
Colin Metcalfe
23 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:28:05
Actually he won’t miss too many games due to the World Cup.
Mark Ryan
24 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:29:27
Some accidents are the results of the stars aligning. Wrong place, wrong time. Many are preceded by near misses, ie, if you keep doing the same thing, eventually an accident will happen.

This kind of fits the bill here. A bad, risky backpass often has a goalkeeper panicking. Pickford gets a hospital pass and should have either belted it into touch or let it go out but he panics and does neither.

It's the same as having the old mentality of "Don't piss about, Row Z it". Pickford panicking and failing to clear an awful back pass compounds the whole fiasco and BOOM.

Nobody's fault but you can reduce the potential outcomes. What to do in future? Play safe, don't take risks.

Matthew Williams
25 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:38:33
This all started with a sloppy back-pass to begin with. Can our coaching staff tell our players not to do this as it's boring, negative and can lead to putting us under undue pressure.

The greatest Gaffer of them all used to fine his Forest players for doing it... yet us Blues are still persisting with it... Why?

Brian Williams
26 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:44:40
If anyone wants to apportion "blame", then put it on the fucking useless referee and linesman who missed the fact that the ball was a meter or more over the line.

If that's seen, whistle's blown or whatever, it doesn't happen. The ref was shit all through the game. Missed Sterling's dive in the lead-up to the penalty as well.

Tony Everan
27 Posted 08/08/2022 at 20:46:26
Lucas Digne can give Ben Godfrey a bit of optimism from his fibula and ligament injury back in 2019. From The Athletic;

“It’s way ahead of schedule,” Everton’s head of medical, Danny Donachie, tells The Athletic. “It was a significant injury Lucas had. He ruptured the medial and lateral ligaments but he also had a significant fracture in his fibula.”

World-renowned surgeon James Calder operated on Digne and had suggested a timeframe of around 12 weeks for his recovery. But the left-back had other ideas.

“Lucas was obviously very upset when he got injured but his mindset from the very next day was ‘I’m going to get back quickly and better than I was before I was injured,’” Donachie says.

“We met the surgeon a week later to remove the plaster and Lucas was quite shocked at how big it (the ankle) looked. But he said straight away he’d be back in eight weeks and then it just went lower and lower to the point where his aim was to get back in six weeks.

“We’ve had players come back from similar injuries in eight weeks and I thought that was incredible…”

I remember Lucas coming back early from that injury and thinking it was a superhuman recovery.

Tommy Carter
28 Posted 08/08/2022 at 21:02:43
Godfrey seriously lost his way after a fine initial season at the club.

I wouldn’t wish such an injury and pain upon any sports person. He didn’t deserve this.

However, he is now faced with the biggest fight of his career so far. Such a fight may work to define him and his character. I have no doubts at all about his determination and commitment.

But his complete loss of belief and confidence was epitomised in that poor back pass and his actions that followed it that led to him breaking his leg.

I hope this journey back to fitness can help him piece together in his head what he needs to become a top player. As he has all the ingredients – he just needs to set himself a 7/10 level of performance bar each week and then maintain it.

Good luck to him in his recovery and I wish him all the best.

Michael Kenrick
29 Posted 08/08/2022 at 21:30:22
Thanks, Will @13 and Danny @16,

That detail helps to understand it better.

As for the sequence of events and the decision-making involved... so many points at which it could (and should) have been avoided.

Will Mabon
30 Posted 08/08/2022 at 21:43:32
"Decision making" - that just made me think.

The linesman obviously couldn't/didn't see the ball go out of play... but I wonder where VAR comes into this?

It all happened very fast so maybe a moot point but it just occurs that this hasn't been mentioned. After all, the kit/cameras are obviously there for goal line decisions. Wonder if they confer live with the ref when this happens?

Si Cooper
31 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:05:10
Michael (11),

“Perhaps that's because no-one has told them – if you do this, then you run a serious risk of breaking a leg!”

I think no one tries to risk manage it in the way you suggest, Michael, for 2 simple reasons:

The probability is actually pretty low. If you look at how many blood-and-thunder challenges result in serious injury, it is actually a very small frequency / percentage.

Secondly, you just can’t compute the many small things that have to come together to cause those serious injuries and so most circumstances are just going to look exactly like those hundreds / thousands of times when you came away unscathed.

I broke my fibula / dislocated my ankle playing rugby just before I turned 16. My surgeon (who I think was called Calver) basically stated that I, like everyone else, ran the risk of further serious injury if I continued playing contact sport. If you play front row you run the risk of much worse than a break that will heal.

I never broke another bone again despite playing on for decades. I have however, torn lots of soft tissue including tendons and ligaments, once had the skin on my nose split open, and had a couple of concussions I wouldn’t have passed a head injury assessment with had those been around in my day.

Probably the most long-lasting injury I had was (ignoring how patchy my knee cartilage appears to be) was footballer’s groin (otitis pubis) which I developed from not having a balanced training plan to strengthen my core (again, something that seemed to become common practise after my heyday) when I got myself to be (temporarily) super fit!

On balance, the creaky knees and crooked finger are small potatoes when the other side of the scales contains thousands of hours of fresh air and exercise and simple camaraderie. If I could get paid millions of pounds for doing it, I’d be even more enthusiastic about risking a few breaks doing something I enjoy.

Mike Gaynes
32 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:08:13
Dr. Mabon #13, I enjoyed sitting in on your seminar.
Bobby Mallon
33 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:15:39
Brian well said ref and Lino useless
Will Mabon
34 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:16:17
Si - Calver. A tall, dark-haired guy, very pleasant, whom would now be about seventy... by any chance?

I ask this because I have quite an orthopaedic history from back in the day, and this is the name of the understudy, registrar, of a top surgeon that seemed to be always repairing me. Mainly Warrington area at the time.

Will Mabon
35 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:18:59
I'm no doctor, Mike - I learned it the hard way... several times.
Michael Kenrick
36 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:28:14
Yea, good post, Si @31,

I actually thought that as I was writing it: it's that narrow line about being risk averse and not being any good at sports. Yes, you have to stay in control... except when you're not.

Mountain climbing is another one. You won't be any good at it if you think you're the one that's gonna fall. Or should I rephrase that: you don't even think about falling.

Si Cooper
37 Posted 08/08/2022 at 22:47:46
That sounds about right Will, although my operation was at Walton hospital.

That was my only encounter with him and it was pretty brief. Saw him on his rounds the next day after I’d woken up and he just said things had gone well with no need to put any metal in.

I think there may have been another guy around at the same time who was also considered a big-shot. I think Calver gave his ‘quit while you are ahead’ advice to everyone though I feel he wasn’t expecting many to actually heed him.

I think it was him who spent quite a lot of time trying to give my younger brother a fully functioning knee after he snapped his ACL even though by the second operation he knew he wasn’t the type to give up his sport easily.

Will Mabon
38 Posted 08/08/2022 at 23:11:22
Well it's a relatively small world in that arena, Si - and they do tend to operate in a wider area of many facilities, ie, the North West. I also went for consultation in Liverpool more than once, the ops were mostly Warrington.

Sounds like the same guy. He was understudying a very accomplished and renowned surgeon, W "Bill" Boyle, to whom I owe remaining bipedal, and several more repairs over a time. I finally (mostly) learned I had to lower my probabilities.

We were very lucky in this part of the country over several decades, in having some of the top people operating here. A lot of work further refining hip replacements was done here etc.

You sometimes wonder how we make it to old age. Things advance all the time, and one thing's for sure - pro' footballers will receive the very best available. Godfrey should be back in no time.

Ed Prytherch
39 Posted 09/08/2022 at 15:36:57
I hurt my knee playing rugby in the first or second game of the season when I was about 20. When I first went to the family doctor in Ormskirk, he said it was because I was not sufficiently fit when the season started.

The pain persisted and I went back to him and he told me that, if I continued to play, I would have a "gammy knee" for the rest of my life, so I quit.

A year or so later, I was living in Harrow and I missed a curb when I was running to the pub shortly before closing time. That was the first time that I was ever carried into a pub when I was sober.

I saw a doctor down there who diagnosed a torn meniscus. He told me that, if I had surgery, there was a 50% chance that they would fix it and a 50% chance that they would make it worse and that I had nothing to lose by training and playing again.

It was great advice. I eventually needed surgery here in The States but by that time the success rate was much higher. In between those two events, I ran 40 marathons.

Will Mabon
40 Posted 09/08/2022 at 17:06:20
It's pretty weird being told you're not fit at 20, Ed! Feels like you can do anything at that age. We can do without any injuries but so many of those daft events can cause real damage, and all for nothing.

Seems like you got through it well. Just thinking about 40 marathons makes me want to go for a lie down.

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