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Top 10 Most Frustrating Injuries to Newcastle players

Matt · Wednesday 19th October 2022
Top 10 Most Frustrating Injuries to Newcastle players

With the current Newcastle squad irritatingly affected by injuries at the moment, we take a look back at some of the most excruciating ones experienced in United's modern history.

10. Alexander Isak, 2022

The irony of our £60million-priced Callum Wilson cover immediately getting a long-term injury is not lost on us. One would assume there's plenty to come from the Swedish international, in what will hopefully be a long Newcastle career, but this early delay is no less frustrating.

9. Rolando Aarons, 2016

This nippy winger had shown lots of promise, usually in pre-season fixtures, in his fledgling Newcastle career, and one green shoot of optimism following United's demotion was that we might see Aarons flourish in the Championship. It wasn't to be, sadly, as he first suffered a metatarsal break very early on, followed by a crucifying ACL rupture only a couple of weeks after recovering. The lad barely featured in the promotion challenge and has never really found form since.

8. Callum Wilson, 2021

Let's face it, there's plenty to choose from when it comes to our current number nine, but the calf injury sustained last Christmas against Man Utd - when the team was finally showing green shoots of recovery on the pitch - felt absolutely crushing. Chris Wood ploughed a lonely furrow after his arrival from Burnley but the sharp upgrade in quality after Wilson's return really magnified what the team missed whilst he was away. Hopefully his next setback is a spec in the very distant future.

7. Carl Cort, 2001

There's no doubting that Bobby Robson really rated Carl Cort despite confusing him with Shola Ameobi, which is why he spent £7million to prise him away from Wimbledon not long after he became manager. It never really got going for the lad though; the worst of his numerous injury lay-offs coming after the 2000/01 season finished. The next campaign was a memorable one with an unlikely title challenge for United, but Cort was mostly unable to contribute; not featuring until March of 2002.

6. Tony Green, 1972

Many people of a certain generation will tell you that they've not seen a more naturally gifted footballer than the attacking midfielder Tony Green. A devastating knee injury prematurely ended his rise to Geordie stardom at the age of 25, when today there's little doubt that a science-led recovery would've seen his career only interrupted, rather than curtailed completely.

5. Jonathan Woodgate, 2004

Another who was no stranger to the physio room as a Newcastle player; there was something about Woody which felt too good to be true. A truly gifted centre-back, he invariably made a huge difference to the Magpies when he played - no less so than against Marseille in the UEFA Cup semi-final in 2004. It's no coincidence that we barely laid a glove on them in the second leg: Woodgate had been sidelined for the rest of the season by that point, and Didier Drogba mopped-up gratefully.

4. Hatem Ben Arfa, 2010

The pursuit of the mercurial Ben Arfa was one that supporters had followed with desperation in the summer of 2010 and they could scarcely believe their eyes when he was finally pictured at Newcastle Airport. Excitement about the player reached fever pitch when he rattled home a 25-yard thunderbolt at Goodison Park, so it was the cruellest of blows when Man City's Nigel De Jong decided that Hatem shouldn't play again that season. Mercifully he returned to playing the following year with no less pace or ingenuity, but it was heart-breaking to see him miss all of 2010/11.

3. Michael Owen, 2006

We don't wish to linger on the thought of this particular individual but there's no getting away from the infuriating blow that was Owen knackering his cruciate ligament against Sweden at the World Cup. He'd recovered from his broken metatarsal to ensure that he could feature for England (rather than Newcastle), so it was sickening to see him go to pieces within 40 seconds of the final group game.

2. Alan Shearer, 1997

It's probably a stretch to say that Shearer's broken ankle - sustained in a meaningless kick-about against Chelsea at Goodison Park - cost Kenny Dalglish the Premier League title, given how miserable Newcastle were in general that season; but it certainly did nothing to assist Kenny's cause. United had sold Les Ferdinand and were left with John Barnes, Ian Rush and Jon Dahl Tomasson to fill the gap left by Shearer. Inevitably we stuttered to a poor finish and Shearer, by his own admission, 'lost a yard of pace.'

1. Kieron Dyer, 2005

The UEFA Cup campaign of 2004/05 represents easily one of the most profound 'what could have been' moments for NUFC in the 21st Century. By the 60th minute of the quarter-final second leg against Sporting Lisbon, United were still 2-1 up on aggregate and looking forward to a semi-final against an unfancied AZ Alkmaar side: the chance for modern silverware had never been greater, arguably even moreso than the FA Cup finals of the late nineties. However, it was at that point that Kieron Dyer - who had been instrumental up to that point - went down with a characteristic injury, and that changed the tide dramatically. Sporting went on to batter us with a late flurry of goals and that was that. We've never been that close since.