In tribute to the late, great Bert Trautmann, Football Burp looks back at instances of players playing on through the pain barrier…
The Manchester City goalkeeper broke his neck in the 75th minute of the 1956 FA Cup final against Birmingham City.
As substitutes were not allowed at the time, Trautmann continued and helped City to a 3-1 win, only discovering the extent of his injuries later on.
And now for five more notable examples from recent(ish) history…
Also a goalkeeper – after all, you’ve got to be mad to be one, right? – the Bosnian recently played on with a bullet in his head after being shot during an amateur football match in the Sarajevo suburb of Boljakov Potok.
The 51-year-old complained of a headache but assumed it had been caused by getting hit on the head by the ball.
It was later deduced that he had been hit by a stray bullet from someone firing a handgun in celebration at a nearby wedding.
Don’t worry folks, he’s alright! See the x-ray for yourselves…
The West Bromwich Albion defender played 45 minutes with a broken leg in a match against Arsenal last December.
“I’ve put it out there because I want people to see the character of the boy,” said Baggies boss Steve Clarke.
“Sometimes people think ‘Steven is always injured’ but he has an incredible strong mental strength and he wants to play.”
Incredible strong mental strength, indeed.
Jason Roberts played on for an hour with the same injury – a fractured fibula – to help Wigan Athletic to Premier League promotion in 2005.
Stuart Pearce is said to have kept his boots on at half time after breaking his leg while playing for West Ham United against Watford in 1999, so determined was he to go out for the second half.
Another cup final involving Birmingham City – the former Scotland midfielder played the last hour of Blues’ 2011 League Cup triumph over Arsenal with a broken rib.
His then manager Alex McLeish said: “It shows that his pain threshold is frightening and also the character of the guy to do that. We all know how painful a broken rib can be.
“I think it happened in a challenge with Nasri. He has taken a right bash in the ribs.”
The Chelsea magician was a major doubt to feature in the 1998 European Cup Winners’ Cup final against Stuttgart having incurred a groin injury a few weeks earlier.
Gianluca Vialli, then the club’s player manager, said: “I have no good news on Franco’s injury – it will be very difficult for him to play in the final now.”
Zola didn’t just play, he scored the winning goal.
This would never be allowed to happen these days…
Can you think of anyone else who played through the pain? Have your say in that comments thing, down there!