Data from the Premier League shows that there were LESS injuries in the 2020-2021 season than last season
Premier League data shows there have been LESS injuries in the 2020-2021 season than last season, despite a packed schedule … but Liverpool have suffered the most with absent stars for 1,118 days.
- Top-flight bosses complain of injuries caused by stacking fixtures
- Data has shown that the excuse that more players are absent is unfounded
- Last season there were 462 injuries, so far this season 438
- Liverpool have been the worst of luck though, with 1,118 days away
Premier League managers will have to dismiss apologies about the impact of injuries on their squads after it was revealed that there have been fewer absences in this busy season than in previous campaigns.
Jürgen Klopp has the most reason to complain about injuries that rule out key players like Virgin van Dijk and Jordan Henderson for 1118 days, but overall teams have faced fewer injuries.
Data collected by Premier Injuries shows 438 injuries occurred in the 2020-21 – to March 21 – season and players were injured 11,784 days before the international break.
There were fewer injuries in the 2020-21 campaign than in the 2019-2020 period
Premier League bosses have complained that the accumulation of matches has led to more problems
Liverpool have suffered the most from absences so far this season when their title defenses fell apart
It’s an improvement from the 462 injuries and 13,937 days in the 2019-2020 campaign – before Covid – and the 464 and 12,440 in the 2018/19 season.
“I am surprised because the number of matches the players have had to endure this season has been hugely overloaded,” said Liam Anderson, former Liverpool first-team sports scientist.
“For teams like Liverpool, Manchester City, Spurs and teams that play in Europe, this hasn’t changed much.”
Anderson, now head of sports science at Crewe, added: ‘However, I expect a much higher injury rate with teams like Burnley and Sheffield United as they are not used to playing on a Wednesday-Sunday basis.
‘Even at these clubs they don’t have the means to rotate their quality players so often.’
The numbers track injuries that keep players out of action for a minimum of 10 days until the end of the 29th game week of each campaign. Liverpool are at the top of the table for the number of days players have been forced out this season at 1,118 with 33 injuries.
In terms of injuries, Burnley has collected the most with 37. Yet their number of injured days is 687 – 431 fewer than in Liverpool.
Everton, Leicester and Sheffield United have the second most injuries with 29 and 27 each. Fulham, West Brom and Aston Villa have had the fewest (13).
Jurgen Klopp is forced to find players at the academy amid an injury crisis in the back
Medical staff are baffled that the increase in the frequency of competitions has had no effect
Crystal Palace and Sheffield United are the second worst with 922 and 802 days lost. Arsenal and West Brom are the least affected with 308 and 416.
Premier League adviser and former Liverpool physio Andy Renshaw is similarly surprised.
‘An important point is that each club keeps the injury data to themselves. But based on that data, it is fantastic evidence to many staffers of many clubs who have managed to keep their preventable injury rates low. Those injuries will be a mix of contact-related problems, ”he says.
‘It does surprise me, because this season has been so different from any other. If the injuries were bigger, any club member would say this is a totally unique season you can’t prepare for. ‘
The lockdown seems to have ensured that top players can take better care of themselves
Anderson says there could be a number of factors why clubs did not experience a spike. Less alcohol and more responsibility are two.
“When we speak to people from Premier clubs, it is clear that players take personal responsibility for their recovery,” he says. “I’ve heard that some players have cryogenic chambers in their house, so when they come back from a European night, they can jump in the room before going to bed.
‘Drinking evenings with friends, that was of course not really possible this season. So it could be changes in the lifestyle of players that have led to a reduction. ‘