Former Arsenal’s physio discusses saving Eduardo’s career after horrific leg break

Former Arsenal physio, Gary Lewin has recalled the terrible injury Eduardo suffered against Birmingham in 2008.

The Brazilian had made a fine start to life at the Emirates following his move from Dynamo Zagreb in Croatia.

The Gunners faced Birmingham in that game, and three minutes into the match Eduardo used his quick feet to get the ball away from Martin Taylor.

While the City player missed the ball, he got Eduardo’s ankle and broke it. That remained one of the most horrific injuries ever suffered by a footballer.

Lewin who was Arsenal’s head physio at the time was one of the first on the scene to help the Brazilian and he has spoken to The Athletic about his experience.

He claimed that the Brazilian was in so much pain that he conversed in his local Portuguese dialect, he got Cesc Fabregas to talk to the striker and calm him down.

He would be operated on a few hours later, and Lewin has revealed that is one of the worst injuries he has seen in his professional career.

‘I’ll never forget it. It’s probably the worst injury I’ve ever seen and when you see something that bad it really sticks in your memory,’ Lewin, who has also worked for England and West Ham, told the Athletic. 

‘When I went on the pitch I noticed his ankle was dislocated and in the wrong shape. I also saw the bone sticking out of his sock so I knew it was an open fracture.’

‘Eduardo was in a lot of distress so the first I did was get hold of the ankle to make sure he couldn’t move it.’

‘With foreign players they always go back to their native tongue, so because he spoke Portuguese I got Cesc Fabregas to talk to him as Spanish and Portuguese are very similar.

‘That way I could communicate to him what we were doing and get some information back about what he was feeling.

The most important thing was to try and calm Eduardo down. We managed to immobilise the ankle and get him off the pitch. He was having surgery within hours.

‘He actually went to Selly Oak Hospital in Birmingham. That is where the military went to treat the injuries they suffered in Afghanistan. The surgeon there was very good and he was on duty that day and he saw that sort of thing day in, day out.’

I remember that day as if it was yesterday for multiple reasons and that tackle from Taylor was shocking and sadly Eduardo was never ever the same player again. He had the talent to be an elite player for years but a journeyman footballer ruined all that.

Tags Eduardo Gary Lewin

1 Comment

  1. I bumped into Eduardo with his family, shopping in Sainsbury’s in London Colney when he still had a surgical boot on and he was such a lovely man. I loved him as a player.

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