How bad have our injuries really been this season?

Pogue Mahone

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I see that our injuries are the latest stick to beat ETH with. A notion that he is responsible for a glut of muscular injuries.

I'm not sure that's true at all. Long term absence due to mpact injuries that needed surgery to fix (Mainoo, Diallo, Malacia, Martinez) have definitely made life difficult for us. I don't think we've otherwise been particularly plagued with injuries. All we've seen has been players like Shaw and Martial doing what they usually do while the rest of the squad are picking up a fairly normal number of injuries.

Quite hard to work out where to find out more about this.

Quick google digs up this interesting article from 2018, which looks at our record during the previous six season and reveals that 2014/15 was the worst of the lot.



TOTAL NUMBER OF INJURIES PER SEASON

In comparison to every other team that has been in the Premier League over the past five seasons, Manchester United have had the second most injuries with 146 in total.
The website this data was based on is down now. Anyone know where we could get an up to date summary to do the same analysis of the subsequent six seasons?
 

Pogue Mahone

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Ok, found some more recent info.


Looks like we had more injuries than any other PL club in 2020/21 (by a considerable margin) and second most in 2021/22. Although maybe not so bad compared to other clubs when you factor in number of days out.

Bit mad that our total injuries in each of those two seasons was well over double the highest of any season from 2012 to 2018 (which was already an outlier!)

Although I wonder if that's because one analysis is PL only and the more recent one is all competitions?
 

AfonsoAlves

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It's not Ten Hag's fault in any capacity here.
Every. team is suffering from injury and fitness problems.

If you look at it from a scheduling POV, top level footballers in 3 years have had one proper pre-season to rest since Covid.

You had the covid break from which the premier league restarted and ended up cramming into the tail end and the winter break during the 20-21 season was cancelled, then you had the euros that got deffered due to covid. Then, the 21-22 season begins and after a gruelling 20 months of almost none stop football they get some respite. Then the Qatar world cup cuts in the 2022-23 season, making the tail end ridiculously exhausting. Then you throw in some other UEFA shite like the nations league and pre-season 23-24 has honestly been the first pre-season many players have had since covid.

Look at the absurd number of ACL injuries to everyone. Madrid's defense got decimated by ACL's and muscular injuries. Militao, Courtois, Alaba all gone. Arsenal, City, Utd, Liverpool, Barcelona, Madrid have all been annihalated (not necessarily at the same time) because of this.

All the big teams have been absolutely screwed sideways by the outrageous run of footballing schedule. Even the top athletes break down after this much intensity.
 
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Wumminator

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I mean we have had it really bad. Don’t think it’s ETH’s fault at all.

But yeah , our injuries are unmanageable. Thank feck for players like Rashford, Bruno, Dalot and McTominay who never get injured seemingly.
 

Pogue Mahone

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It's not Ten Hag's fault in any capacity here.
Every. team is suffering from injury and fitness problems.

If you look at it from a scheduling POV, top level footballers in 3 years have had one proper pre-season to rest since Covid.

You had the covid break from which the premier league restarted and ended up cramming into the tail end and the winter break during the 20-21 season was cancelled, then you had the euros that got deffered due to covid. Then, the 21-22 season begins and after a gruelling 20 months of almost none stop football they get some respite. Then the Qatar world cup cuts in the 2022-23 season, making the tail end ridiculously exhausting. Then you throw in some other UEFA shite like the nations league and pre-season 23-24 has honestly been the first pre-season many players have had since covid.

Look at the absurd number of ACL injuries to everyone. Madrid's defense got decimated by ACL's and muscular injuries. Militao, Courtois, Alaba all gone. Arsenal, City, Utd, Liverpool, Barcelona, Madrid have all been annihalated (not necessarily at the same time) because of this.

All the big teams have been absolutely screwed sideways by the outrageous run of footballing schedule. Even the top athletes break down after this much intensity.
Assuming we're comparing apples with apples, the comparison between the pre and post covid injury record is incredible. As per the OP, a total of 40 injuries for us in 2013/14 was seen as some sort of spectacular outlier for us. The worst from 2012-18 by a big margin. But that same injury record in 2020-2022 would have us as the least injury prone club in the top 6 by a huge margin. With the most injured clubs picking up well over twice as many injuries in each season!
 

AfonsoAlves

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Assuming we're comparing apples with apples, the comparison between the pre and post covid injury record is incredible. As per the OP, a total of 40 injuries for us in 2013/14 was seen as some sort of spectacular outlier for us. The worst from 2012-18 by a big margin. But that same injury record in 2020-2022 would have us as the least injury prone club in the top 6 by a huge margin. With the most injured clubs picking up well over twice as many injuries in each season!
It's only going to get worse. The new Champions league format is adding between 2-8 extra games dependent on who you are and where you finish.
 

Solius

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I've also noticed other teams have of course had their injuries but their best players are always available for games against us.

Van de Ven and Bentancur out for ages and then back against us. Haaland basically injured from end of Nov til late Jan and of course we play them either side of that period.
 

Shinjch

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It has been a problem at the club for so long. Probably due to a combination of culture and being a bit behind in sports science compared to other clubs. Can only hope that the new regime are able to make the appointments and adjustments required to make it improve.
 

Pogue Mahone

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I've also noticed other teams have of course had their injuries but their best players are always available for games against us.

Van de Ven and Bentancur out for ages and then back against us. Haaland basically injured from end of Nov til late Jan and of course we play them either side of that period.
De Bruyne will miss most of the season but play in their next match against us.
 

Robbie Boy

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I've also noticed other teams have of course had their injuries but their best players are always available for games against us.

Van de Ven and Bentancur out for ages and then back against us. Haaland basically injured from end of Nov til late Jan and of course we play them either side of that period.
I remember back in the day Henry was a doubt every time we played Arsenal. Somehow, he would always be fit to play.
 

horsechoker

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Plus the extended club world cup starts in the summer of 2025.
I've also noticed other teams have of course had their injuries but their best players are always available for games against us.

Van de Ven and Bentancur out for ages and then back against us. Haaland basically injured from end of Nov til late Jan and of course we play them either side of that period.
As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods;
They kill us for their sport.
 

Chumpsbechumps

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Can you imagine we had actually qualified for the CL knockouts and gotten further in the league cup? We’d have no players fit by the end of the month
 

BenitoSTARR

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It’s been bad. The data proves this. Use the links I shared in my thread to see for yourself.
 

Beachryan

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There's probably something in here about our 'style'. I have to imagine chaos and counter-attacking is conducive to more muscle strains, as opposed to the more sedate, controlled style of City, or the general low-blocks favoured by lower-table teams.
 

AfonsoAlves

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There's probably something in here about our 'style'. I have to imagine chaos and counter-attacking is conducive to more muscle strains, as opposed to the more sedate, controlled style of City, or the general low-blocks favoured by lower-table teams.
This isn't true either, there's no correlation between playing style and injury record.

The passive flippy flappy late-Wenger era Arsenal used to get loads of injuries, consistently.

Peak Klopp having each player busting a gut running a marathon for 90 minutes seemed to be relatively injury free.
 

M Bison

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Sadly yes, they have to do something. We are winning games and slowly improving the GD.
Bizarre, i actually thought people would be a bit more sympathetic towards any unfavourable result tomorrow due to the injury list, but its quite the opposite it seems, how naïve of me!
 

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I remember back in the day Henry was a doubt every time we played Arsenal. Somehow, he would always be fit to play.
That was just mind games though, surely? Always the case in big matches between title challengers.
 

Chumpsbechumps

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Bizarre, i actually thought people would be a bit more sympathetic towards any unfavourable result tomorrow due to the injury list, but its quite the opposite it seems, how naïve of me!
I’d say there’s plenty sharpening the knife and excited at the prospect they can let loose on ETH. They’ve had to feed on scraps complaining about XG and possession, they may actually be able to point to a result this year that validates their obsession with sacking him.

The bigger issue for me is that this really does put a massive spanner in the works. We really didn’t have any room for mistakes or dropped points and losing Houjland is a disaster.
 

bosnian_red

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People are blaming EtH for our injury problems, really?
Sadly yes, they have to do something. We are winning games and slowly improving the GD.
Eh, not blaming, more questioning if it is related. All I was saying was it felt like we've had a ton of muscular injuries but maybe it's wrong and they're unique circumstances. Likewise it feels like it's an impact from last season's ridiculous fixture list, however the players struggling from injuries weren't affected by this fixture load last season really. And this season is a very light fixture load, the lightest any big team can basically have given we got knocked out of the league cup early and champions league early.

So either all our players are a bunch of softies/crocks, we've been hit with horrible luck, or the training is doing something... Because we really don't have any fixture load issues this season, unlike the past 5+ seasons.
 

Pogue Mahone

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Eh, not blaming, more questioning if it is related. All I was saying was it felt like we've had a ton of muscular injuries but maybe it's wrong and they're unique circumstances. Likewise it feels like it's an impact from last season's ridiculous fixture list, however the players struggling from injuries weren't affected by this fixture load last season really. And this season is a very light fixture load, the lightest any big team can basically have given we got knocked out of the league cup early and champions league early.

So either all our players are a bunch of softies/crocks, we've been hit with horrible luck, or the training is doing something... Because we really don't have any fixture load issues this season, unlike the past 5+ seasons.
How many midweeks have we had off this season so far compared to previous seasons? Two? Three? Not really seeing how that could make a big difference. Especially when you consider the only new injuries we've picked up since we started having midweeks without football have been Shaw (who is a permacrock anyway) and Hojlund. All the rest of the injuries came while playing with an identical load to prior seasons. Two of the worst ones (Diallo, Mainoo) came before the season even started!
 

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I wouldn't blame ETH for injuries but it doesn't feel like its luck at this point. Most seasons we seem to go through some kind of prolonged injury crisis or the wheels start coming off at some point due too many players being missing.

I think its two things.
1) We have too many injury prone players - How many first team players do we have who you can actually rely on to be fit for a season under normal circumstances? Bruno, Rashford, Dalot (maybe?), Onana. Hopefully Hojlund, Mainoo and Garnacho can go on that list. Its a very short list. It has no midfielders in it and only one or two defenders. Its hardly a surprise we have to field patched together line ups when we don't even have a first team 11 we can name who are reliable injury wise.
2) We don't have many players in reserve who are at the same or similar level to the players in the first team. City get an injury and there is a capable replacement to step in. They can have 4-5 first team players out and still field a strong line up. Try taking any 5 first team players out of our strongest line up without making it look like something that would struggle to out play a mid table side. The depth isn't there which means both that the injuries impact the team more, and are also more likely to happen where every game stretches the players who are available that bit more.
 

bosnian_red

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How many midweeks have we had off this season so far compared to previous seasons? Two? Three? Not really seeing how that could make a big difference. Especially when you consider the only new injuries we've picked up since we started having midweeks without football have been Shaw (who is a permacrock anyway) and Hojlund. All the rest of the injuries came while playing with an identical load to prior seasons. Two of the worst ones (Diallo, Mainoo) came before the season even started!
Actually just counting last season until the end of February compared to this season, we had 40 games and this season we have 37 games by the end of the month. So pretty much just a recent January and February impact so far. Normal before our CL elimination, but early league cup elimination gave an easy Christmas period. By the end of the season we'll at least have 10 fewer games between the league cup and Europa League, while FA Cup we played 6 games and have our 3rd coming up away to forest. So somewhere between 10 and 13 fewer games, all focused in the 2nd half of the season.

If nothing, silver lining should be that we are rested somewhat for next season...
 

Pogue Mahone

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Actually just counting last season until the end of February compared to this season, we had 40 games and this season we have 37 games by the end of the month. So pretty much just a recent January and February impact so far. Normal before our CL elimination, but early league cup elimination gave an easy Christmas period. By the end of the season we'll at least have 10 fewer games between the league cup and Europa League, while FA Cup we played 6 games and have our 3rd coming up away to forest. So somewhere between 10 and 13 fewer games, all focused in the 2nd half of the season.

If nothing, silver lining should be that we are rested somewhat for next season...
So three games the difference between now and the same stage last season. So we can ignore your point about the load being significantly lighter than previous seasons, as it's been almost identical up until now.
 

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The discussion about reducing the amount of teams in PL surfaces every year with different angles. Same thing with double fixtures in the FA Cup. Today, fixtures ending in a draw until round 5 will be replayed, causing rescheduling. It helps that PL teams enter in round 3, but still seems like a waste (from the PL team's perspective). In the discussion about Project Big Picture there was also mentions about limiting Carabao Cup participants to only those not involved in an European tournament.

The fixture list is bloated, and the footballing product gets weakened. This is even worse during world cups and European cups and the like.
 

bosnian_red

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So three games the difference between now and the same stage last season. So we can ignore your point about the load being significantly lighter than previous seasons, as it's been almost identical up until now.
Think I have miscounted for what it's worth, we've had 2 fewer games in Europe, 3 fewer games in the league cup and the league cup final was in Feb, so would be 6. But like I said, it's all concentrated from mid December til now. The last 2 months have been the lightest schedule we've had in many, many years, when we never had any midweeks off. Having a light schedule for 2 months is a pretty big deal in terms of recovery. Before that CL elimination, it was standard busy, but we've had an extended run of light fixtures.

And like others have pointed out, the actual players who are playing the most aren't the ones getting injured. The injuries are going to those who can't really say they've been over worked. So again, I really can't see blaming match load for injuries this season.
 

bosnian_red

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The discussion about reducing the amount of teams in PL surfaces every year with different angles. Same thing with double fixtures in the FA Cup. Today, fixtures ending in a draw until round 5 will be replayed, causing rescheduling. It helps that PL teams enter in round 3, but still seems like a waste (from the PL team's perspective). In the discussion about Project Big Picture there was also mentions about limiting Carabao Cup participants to only those not involved in an European tournament.

The fixture list is bloated, and the footballing product gets weakened. This is even worse during world cups and European cups and the like.
This is always the answer that makes sense to me. These teams don't need to be in it. Plus gives other teams a shot at a trophy every year and European football every year.
 

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Going to be the same next season because of the Euros, unless the squad is tended to in the summer. Games need to be reduced, because the football quality sucks.
 

VP89

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I think it’s somewhat a combination of both. Non contact muscular injuries are a red flag. Now obvious Shaw/Martial etc will always have issues and that’s not down to anyone else. But by all accounts we train extremely hard, and then we run incredibly hard (or try to) during matches with the style we play. I just wonder if there’s a way to maximize the efficiency of it all because it’s simply not sustainable to sprint all week training and then also roll out on the weekends and do the same thing, especially our attackers. You can see the effect in game too, the front 3 by the 75th minute is exhausted and we clearly get much sloppier in the final 3rd.
Just replying here as this thread is dedicated to the injuries.
I definitely don't think we go "extremely hard" in the trainings. Probably the level needed. As mentioned earlier Ten Hag has explained in congested fixture periods that he does lighter sessions to keep players fresh. But when you have games a week apart I believe he should train as normal.

Regarding the in game running, yes it's not ideal that our players are running up and down a lot, but I don't believe this to be a system or tactical issue as much as some might suggest. I think under the right personnel the approach is more controlled and more dominant, but with the level of some of our squad players mean we tend to surrender the ball too much (vs Luton for example Dalot was literally our only defender who can take a ball on a half turn and carry it out).


Eh, not blaming, more questioning if it is related.
I wasn't directing that throwaway line at you specifically :)
 

MF1138

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Poor squad building. We're too reliant on players who are injury prone.

We end up with players playing almost every game available and being rushed back from injury because the replacement hasn't been good enough.

We have been somewhat unlucky that some of the back up players have also had long term injuries.
 

Cee90

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ETH has made mistakes along the way of course and has to take some responsibility for some awful performances this season, but I honestly think he’s been dealt a bad hand with injuries this season. Without as many injuries to key players I think we’d view the season a lot more favourably.