Wednesday, April 8, 2015

8 April 1996 - Busst's Bad Break

On 8 April 1996, Coventry City defender David Busst suffered one of the most horrific injuries in football history during a Premier League match against Manchester United.

Just under two minutes into the match at Old Trafford, Coventry won a corner kick and Busst (pronounced "Boost") rushed forward into United's penalty area. As the kick came in, United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel knocked the ball toward Busst, who slipped in between two United players to get a toe on it. Then, as Busst tells it, "that's when the screaming started." He fell to the ground with his right leg bent at an unnatural right angle - his tibia and fibula both had snapped in two after colliding with United's Brian McClair and Denis Irwin.

The match was delayed for 15 minutes while the ground staff cleaned blood off the pitch. Reportedly, Schmeichel was so disturbed by the sight of the injury that he vomited. He also later sought counseling to deal with the memory. Soon after the match, he visited Busst in the hospital, as did United's Alex Ferguson, Steve Bruce, David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, and Eric Cantona, as well as Busst's Coventry City teammates.

Busst underwent a total of 22 operations to repair the damage, but while the doctors saved his leg, he never played professional football again.

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