I was recently talking to one of our very talented players and we were discussing how critical it is in football to have a good physician who can do a proper assessment and provide the right treatment at the right time. This young striker was a promising player in South Africa. But unfortunately at the age of 18, he got injured and damaged his ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). After a long recovery, he joined us in Dubai at the beginning of last season. He did a couple of training sessions and played a few games during which we found him to be a highly skilled and talented footballer. But unfortunately in the next training session, he got his knee injured again. So you can imagine how frustrating and disheartening it must be for the young boy who was so happy to be back on the field.
However, he went back home and got a medical assessment and treatment which involved physiotherapy. After the completion of the treatment, he was sent back to us in Dubai. But right in the first training session following his return, we noticed that he was not able to play his best. His movements and body language indicated there was something wrong. Therefore, we sent him to a very well-known physiotherapist in Dubai. He had six to seven physiotherapy sessions with the player and affirmed that he was now fit to play. But to our surprise, the knee had not gotten any better this time either. Eventually, an MRI was done and the report showed a damaged meniscus.
It was really shocking and disappointing at the same time to see that two highly qualified and renowned physiotherapists were unable to make the correct diagnosis and provide the right treatment to the player. Both spent over six sessions with him each, and every time he was sent back on the field unwell. The saga finally ended when the boy went through an operation that fixed the issue. He is now continuing sessions with our physiotherapist who is one of the best that I’ve worked with. And I'm pleased to see that he is well on track to recovery.
But, the point is that an entire year of an exceptionally talented player went to waste simply because he wasn't given due medical attention. I cannot overemphasize the importance of the right diagnosis and right treatment at the right time, especially in the case of sportsmen. Wrong treatment or the lack of it can ruin careers and dreams. So you should never be reckless about your health and always ensure that you're receiving the best treatment from the best medical professionals timely.