Career ending injury flourishes into a new path of the game
By Tyler Lloyd
The most heart-breaking thing in football is when it’s time to hang your boots and leave the beautiful game. However, it doesn’t get much worse when an injury forces you to do this prematurely.
With most recently Sergio Aguero’s career hanging in the balance after being forced off to hospital after saying he had chest pains following a La Liga fixture. He was ruled out for three months following an irregular heartbeat. Now news has come in that he is set to retire following this injury with Barcelona manager Xavi saying that his future is uncertain.
Another player who suffered this was Paul Lloyd who was in the books of Aston Villa as a teenager. The forward also made brief appearances for the reserve side before he suffered an injury which would change his life. He suffered a compound fracture to the leg which ultimately led to him retiring at just his teenage years.
Paul Lloyd in his Bure Park colours.
This would’ve been a tough blow for any aspiring footballer to take as he said, “To be told at a young age that you’re not going to be able to play football again was tough to take. Especially when you are being told that you’re tipped to be playing at a high level makes it even harder”.
However, after retiring from the game his love for it never went as Paul Lloyd went on to get his UEFA B coaching badges and led Oxford City youth team to their first ever FA Cup first round tie. Lloyd has also achieved a lot more post playing career which he mentions. “I also coached at Manchester United at youth level and have been a scout and coach for Reading FC. It was a great experience to work at two great clubs and had fantastic memories with both.”
Paul Lloyd’s most recent job was at Bure Park FC where he led the club to their best ever finish in the 2020/21 season before the covid outbreak occurred.
Despite Lloyd wanted to have a much longer stint as playing the game, he emphasised that managing the game was just as exciting as playing as he says. “Yeah, I would certainly say managing is just as exciting as playing as, you get to work with all the players and hope that you develop them into better players than they were before you had them, putting your own spin and philosophy into the team also is great and if you get wins from it there’s nothing better and is really rewarding”.
Paul Lloyd’s story has been a successful one and is one that has only been done by a selected amount of players including Jamie Redknapp, who had to retire due to persistent injuries and is now a successful Sky Sports pundit and Ryan Mason, who is now a successful coach following an early retirement due to a fractured skill and is in the ranks of his boyhood club Tottenham Hotspur.