Editors Choice

England reward was beginning of the end for ex-Liverpool star

Getting called up to England national team should be one of the greatest experiences for a footballer. Unfortunately it proved to be a nightmare for this former Premier League star?

PA ImagesEngland duty for David Thompson was rightfully earned after consistent performances in the Premier League. Little did he know, that at the end of this training session, his career was going to take a very different path.

Risk

 

As much as we all love football, it's a fact that anyone who plays the game could suffer injury at some point, no matter if it's with mates at the weekend or earning millions playing in the Premier League.

Most football injuries mean time on the sidelines and then a return to fitness. Imagine what it's like when a player realises that the injury they've got is not going away but is getting worse!

Some injuries are more serious than others, last a long time or even stop you from playing ever again. Coming through the ranks of the Liverpool youth system with the likes of Steven Gerrard, Michael Owen and Jamie Carragher, David Thompson was a dynamic and technically gifted midfield player.

He had a gritty attitude, enthusiastic desire and good footballing ability, enabling him to occupy most positions across the midfield.   

 

Footballers at all levels accept that injury can happen at anytime. The hope is that they aren't too serious.
Prof. Sanjiv Jari - football4football orthopedic surgeon

  

 The Liverpool born footballer had already starred for his country at under-21 level, but a move to Blackburn in 2002 earned him a call up to the England senior squad from Sven-Göran Eriksson

 

+6 PA ImagesFormer teammate, Steven Gerrard is brushed aside by David Thompson. Displays like this for Blackburn Rovers, made Thompson an obvious choice for the full England squad. We Meet Again

Recognition

 

Getting called up to the national team is one of the proudest moments for any player. Thompson was no different; hard work and quality performances had finally got him the recognition that his talent deserved. This was even more of an achievement considering that he had left high-flying Liverpool and was playing for a decent, but not exactly Premier League title challenging Blackburn Rovers side.

Whilst training with his new England team mates, a knee injury forced Thompson to return to his club after the first session. Although he didn’t know it at the time, this would keep him out of football for nine months. It was the start of an injury hit six-years in which he would struggle to return to his best form on the pitch and eventually retire.

 

+6 PA ImagesEngland duty for David Thompson was rightfully earned after consistent performances in the Premier League. Little did he know, that at the end of this training session, his career was going to take a very different path.Deserved

 

Cartilage

 

Thompson's injury involved damage to the cartilage and meniscus in the outside of the knee. A football injury like this is always likely to cause future problems in some shape or form. Some players have a cartilage surgery, return and never have trouble again. For others, it can be a long process of operation after operation.

Fact: The No.1 operation on footballers

This is the most common football injury across all levels of the game that requires surgery.

The No.1 Operation On Footballers

This is the most common football injury across all levels of the game that requires surgery.

Sometimes it's easy to look at footballer's big wages, luxury lifestyle, high profile and think lucky so and so. However, it's important to realise that all of this can be taken away in an instant. To be fair, all the players that we come across accept they live in a privileged environment, but appreciate it is only about playing football that really matters.

 

Love of the game

Despite what David Thompson or any other player who has worked at making a career in football possess, a journey in the game can end before its time. No house, car or money replaces putting their boots on and playing the game they love.  Football at all levels is very much 'risk-reward'

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