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Young: Pace of top-flight football to blame for serious injuries

Young impresses as England end year with qualifying draw Wednesday media watch [AM]
Young: Pace of top-flight football to blame for serious injuries

By Paul Brown

Luke Young has dismissed suggestions the top-flight is becoming dirtier, insisting the pace of the game is the major factor behind a spate of bad injuries.

Wolves midfielder Karl Henry was sent off against Wigan early on after one particular challenge sent Jordi Gomez flying up into the air.

Meanwhile, Manchester City's Nigel De Jong's tackle on Hatem Ben Arfa left the Newcastle United loanee with a broken leg in two places.

Young insists his fellow professionals are not intentionally going out to hurt their opponents and says the speed of football in the Barclays Premier League makes serious injuries unavoidable.

He said: "It is really [difficult to put in the perfect tackle].

"What's happening now is people are getting injured long-term. People are looking at the tackle and kind of want to punish it depending on how long the player is out for.

"I know the De Jong tackle wasn't a great tackle but if the guy gets up nobody really talks about it.

"Because he's unfortunately broken his leg it makes it a bigger situation.

"It's difficult - you want to go in full-blooded and win the ball but there's obviously a risk of injury and that's the game we play.

"It's unfortunate that quite a few leg-break injuries have happened already this season.

"Pitches are definitely harder but I don't know - I just think it's how fast the game is maybe now.

"You can be literally a split-second away from making a great tackle that then looks horrific on the screen.

"All you're doing is trying to do is assert yourself on the game and get in with a strong tackle to let everyone know you're there.

"You're not trying to hurt someone but the game is so quick.

"If you've got a winger who can do a hundred metres in 11 seconds and you're a split second out it can look terrible on TV, especially when you slow the footage down.

"You're just trying to let people know you're there and you want to win the ball.

"I genuinely believe everyone is going in to win the ball but to win the ball hard and fair to let someone know you're around so they know they're not going to have an easy day.

"I don't think anyone's going in to deliberately hurt people. If they are, that's not great for the game. But I genuinely believe people aren't doing that.

"I think it's been a coincidence that all this has happened in the same month or so.

"I don't anybody is doing anything different. Like I said, it'd been unfortunate with the amount of injuries we've had.

"There's sometimes as equally bad a tackle and a player jumps up and it's forgotten about."

By @AVFCOfficial 13th October 2010
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