IMO it's a combination, players get all sorts of injections to allow them to play when they really shouldn't be playing, sometimes players need protecting from themselvesDo you attribute that to injuries suffered on the pitch or is it more related to recovery, rehabilitation and fitness and strength coaches being less common and not as educated?
Edit: I'm 35 and am like this and I quit football at 18. Misdiagnosed by a doctor, not properly treated (same knee problem as Scholes) and got not strength training and trained excessively so muscle injuries were common.
Look at the longevity players have today, without the 'protection' the likes of Messi & Ronaldo would have been long finished, some of the tackling rules have gone too though far I agree
I played cricket, it caused me ankle problems and I had to stop playing in my early 20's, it took 10-15 years to get over the ankle issues and even now, 40 years later they're still a tad iffy at times!