Ben Chilwell was able to return for some minutes at the end of Chelsea’s last game of the season, a really nice cap to a season that had petered out rather disappointingly for the team, and a nice moment for the left back to help motivate him through this summer.
His cruciate injury had kept him out since November, but in an interview on the Chelsea FC website today he revealed how close he had been to an earlier return.
“The plan was for me to watch the boys on Boxing Day and train with the group that didn’t play on the 27th but Christmas Day I was doing a session on the pitch and just felt it go again.”
That must have been devastating for him – and we can only hope that the surgery won’t affect him long term. It’s always tragic to hear how close a player might have been to playing on without significant surgical intervention.
Modern surgery has come such a long way though, and we often have to readjust our mindset from the 1990s where issues like this were far riskier in affecting players’ careers.