“Only with a miracle at the World Cup, but I don’t suppose that”
Miedema after cruciate ligament injury: ‘Only after a miracle at the World Cup, but I don’t suppose that’
Two big ones on crutches. For example, Vivianne Miedema and her partner Beth Mead were on the red carpet in Salford, where the prestigious sports personality of the year will be awarded tonight.
Mead is the favorite for the most important British sporting prize of the year. After all, she was the star of the English footballers, who became European champions in their own country last summer. But in late November, Mead tore a cruciate ligament in his knee during Arsenal’s league game against Manchester United.
And last week, the same thing happened to Miedema during Arsenal’s Champions League game against Olympique Lyonnais. Both stars have fears ahead of the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand this summer.
The British sports gala is therefore a beacon of hope in a dark period. “It was better…”, said Miedema. “But it can happen to anyone and I think it’s mostly about Beth tonight.”
On his chances of a miraculous recovery for the World Cup “It’s just going to take a long time. I’m going to have surgery in early January. And then it’s going to be small steps and then I hope to be fit again in the start of next year’s season. The World Cup is not realistic. Of course, I would love to be there, but I also hope to be able to play football for a few more years. And that just involves a lot of risk. If a miracle happens, I could be there. But I’m not going to be there because of it.”
Last month, Miedema herself sounded the alarm about the busy schedules of footballers these days. Does she see a connection to Miedema and Mead’s knee injury? “It’s hard to say, but it says enough that five of the top twenty players in recent years have now torn a cruciate ligament. It seems like it could happen anytime now on any pitch. And I think that we have to take into account a lot more serious injuries.”
“The match schedule has to be adjusted. FIFA and UEFA, but also all the associations have to come together. At the moment it’s just about playing more matches, because then more money will come in. It’s about entertainment, not the health of the players.”
Wiegman: “An overloaded program does not help”
Sarina Wiegman stood proudly on the red carpet. The successful coach led England to the European title and was named Coach of the Year at the UK gala.
Wiegman understands what Miedema says: “If you come from a top country and you play all the tournaments, you have a great tournament five summers in a row. And that without the players resting enough to recover. In the end account, you also have to look at the individual player and the carrying capacity. But it’s clear that the overloaded program doesn’t help.”
Wiegman after Miedema injury: ‘The full program doesn’t help, something has to be done’
Still, tonight can be a special night in the Mead-Miedema house. Winning Sports Personality of the Year is no small feat. “Until last week, I had no idea,” admits Miedema.
“But I think it’s very important. Beth of course had a great year. It would be really cool if she could end the year on a high note. I’ll be watching with my knee up and so will Beth. And then I Hopefully we can win a prize to take home tonight.”
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