When Colony Colts and Glentanar CFC 2001s met at Garioch Sports Centre for their league fixture, little did any of the players, parents or coaches realise that a serious injury would cause play to be suspended, and yet would also highlight the spirit of youth football. Manager of Colony Colts, Chris Davidson, spoke to YFS to share what happened at the game, and to praise the opposing club for their actions.
Davidson told how the B league section 2 game was abandoned after only ten minutes of play when Colony Colts captain, Tom Adams, suffered a serious ankle injury. He said, “Colony Colts SYFA qualified first aider, Maggie Riach, was invited onto the pitch by the referee on the tenth minute after Colts’ striker, Tom Adams, stayed down following a fair 50/50 challenge by one of the Glentanar defenders.
"On her approach to Tom on the pitch, Maggie immediately noticed the serious deformation of Tom’s right ankle and summoned for an ambulance to be called. After requesting an ambulance, Maggie re-assured, comforted and calmed Tom as he lay on his back on the ground in pain.”
The Glentanar coaching staff also assisted in providing first aid to the injured player, which the Colony coaches greatly appreciated. Davidson said, “The Glentanar coaches came onto the pitch to offer assistance. Maggie focussed on talking to Tom, keeping him calm and ensuring he didn’t go to sleep, whilst the Glentanar coach, Cameron Murray- who had recently done his first aid training - supported Tom’s leg, which was clearly broken and badly dislocated at the ankle.
"Cameron also then re-assured Tom, talking to him at all times and, in particular, kept Tom breathing slowly and deeply in order to stop him from shivering and tensing up too much. Tom’s boot was also carefully removed by Willie Reid, Glentanar team manager. In a nutshell, the Glentanar coaches were absolutely fantastic, along with our own first aider, Maggie.”
The unprecedented injury was shocking to players, coaches and parents of both teams. “A couple of players who were in the immediate vicinity of the incident were notably shocked at the time as the reality of Tom’s injury was immediately apparent, with his ankle visibly dislocated. All in all, there was a resounding feeling of shock amongst both sets of players, coaches and parents.”
Davidson also told how Willie Reid, the manager of Glentanar CFC, ensured that his players remained at a distance from the injured player before taking them to their changing room, while Davidson also chaperoned his own players back to their changing room until the situation could be fully assessed and a decision made on whether to continue the game or not, which was tied at 0-0 when play was suspended.
The Colony manager also had nothing but praise for both sets of parents. “Tom’s Dad and two other Colts’ parents came onto the pitch to be with Tom and keep his spirits up until emergency assistance arrived. The Glentanar parents also showed their concern for the welfare of the Colony player. When the game was abandoned, there were no moans and groans about a wasted journey to Inverurie, as all were more concerned about the injury to Tom Adams.”
Tom Adams was taken to ARI for his injury to be further assessed and to start repairing the damage to his ankle. “Tom is recovering well", says Davidson. "He was taken to ARI to have his ankle re-set, pinned and plastered. He’ll remain in a knee length plaster cast for another few weeks and will commence gradual physio soon. Then it’s just a case of time, patience and sticking to the physio’s instructions!”
Although he is unable to play, Tom has been in attendance at games to support his team mates and, in turn, they have been supportive of him and his recovery. “Tom is in good spirits and continues to come along to Colts matches to show his support for his team mates. He has also received some very special ‘signed’ get well cards from teams such as Manchester United and Aberdeen FC, as well as from his Colts team mates.
“Tom is a very fit and strong lad with a great positive attitude that will see him well through this frustrating and difficult time. The race is now on between Tom and his fellow strike partner, Declan Abel, who also recently broke his leg in a snowboarding incident, to see who gets back playing first.”
Colony Colts and Glentanar CFC have since replayed the fixture, with Glentanar claiming the three points with a 2-0 win. The two sides still have one more chance to play each other in the league this season yet nothing will overshadow the fantastic sportsmanship shown by both sides in their previous meeting. Davidson said, “All coaches, parents and first aiders from both teams were fantastic and showed the true spirit of juvenile football as they all worked together to look after our player.”
YFS would like to congratulate both teams on the great camaraderie shown in the midst of injury, and would also like to wish Tom Adams and Declan Abel all the best for their recoveries, and hope that they will be playing again soon.