Latrell Mitchell leaves Joey Many with a shattered face forcing Sydney Roosters player to undergo surgery

Sydney Roosters star Joey Manu had been hit with three metal plates in the face after his cheekbone was broken in a sickening tackle by Latrell Mitchell.

The 25-year-old was operated on for several hours by surgeons at a private hospital in Brisbane on Saturday after the game against South Sydney.

Teammedico Dr. Tom Longworth compared the devastating injuries to the player’s face to a car accident.

“The surgeon said it would have taken a lot of force to do so much damage,” he said.

“You see it more in a car accident than with football equipment.”

Manu was knocked out by Mitchell in a horror-high tackle during South Sydney’s 54-12 win over the Roosters on Friday.

NRL player Joey Manu has had surgery and has been given three metal plates after his cheekbone was broken in a sickening tackle by South Sydney’s Latrell Mitchell

The 25-year-old was operated on for several hours by surgeons at a private hospital in Brisbane on Saturday after the game against South Sydney.

The 25-year-old was operated on for several hours by surgeons at a private hospital in Brisbane on Saturday after the game against South Sydney.

Teammedico Dr.  Tom Longworth compared the 25-year-old's devastating facial injuries to a 'car accident' (pictured, Manu after Friday's tackle)

Teammedico Dr. Tom Longworth compared the 25-year-old’s devastating facial injuries to a ‘car accident’ (pictured, Manu after Friday’s tackle)

The NRL’s Match Review Committee slammed Mitchell with a second-degree reckless high tackle charge meaning the South Sydney superstar will miss six games if he pleads guilty and nine if he fails on appeal.

Manu must remain in the hospital for at least 48 hours, The Daily Telegraph reported.

The Sydney Roosters star is expected to make a full recovery, despite fears he could sustain permanent damage to his right eye.

“The good thing is his eye is fine,” Dr. Longworth said.

“His season is over, but he will be back next season. Nothing will stop him from playing again.’

The charge against Mitchell is in fact the fifth highest possible figure of the nine that can be passed for high shots.

Relegating the charge to a reckless first-class high tackle also wouldn’t be enough to get him back on the field this year, resulting in a five-game suspension.

The NRL's Match Review Committee has beaten Mitchell with a second-degree reckless high tackle charge

The NRL’s Match Review Committee has beaten Mitchell with a second-degree reckless high tackle charge

Tempers soon reached a boiling point after Latrell Mitchell's hit on Joey Manu (pictured next to referee Ashley Klein)

Tempers soon reached a boiling point after Latrell Mitchell’s hit on Joey Manu (pictured next to referee Ashley Klein)

It means he would have to lower the charge by two levels to a grade three careless high tackle, which would get him a four-week suspension.

Even then, he would only return to the grand final if Souths lost to Penrith in the first week of the final, but went on to reach the decider.

Adding further problems for Mitchell is that if he goes to the judiciary to demote it or fight it altogether and is unsuccessful, the ban will be extended to nine games and well into 2022.

Mitchell’s plight is not helped by the fact that he has four priors, three of them in one game this year against the Wests Tigers, as well as a high profile charge against the same opponent in 2020.

It comes after the Rabbitohs sparked calls for judicial reform earlier this year, arguing that the charge should be limited to 25 percent.

Mitchell’s tax in this case is 80 percent.

Mitchell (pictured, with wife Brielle) could accept the charge and receive a six-game suspension, ending his season and leaving him with a delayed start until 2022

Mitchell (pictured, with wife Brielle) could accept the charge and receive a six-game suspension, ending his season and leaving him with a delayed start until 2022

Relegating the charge to a reckless first-class high-tackle also wouldn't be enough to put him back on the field this year, resulting in a five-game suspension

Relegating the charge to a reckless first-class high-tackle also wouldn’t be enough to put him back on the field this year, resulting in a five-game suspension

Either way, it’s a huge blow to the Rabbitohs’ title hopes in what was basically a pointless game for the club.

The 24-year-old went to another level this season as a fullback, offering hopes that Souths could challenge title fanatics Melbourne and Penrith after missing the final series with a hamstring injury last year.

“We’ll have to wait and see,” coach Wayne Bennett said when asked if they could win the title without Mitchell.

“He’s a huge player for us but last year we didn’t have him in the play-offs and I think we’re a better team than last year and pretty good at getting other players to play well for us in key positions .

“We’ve won a lot of games this year with a lot of players missing.”

Meanwhile, the indictment will also raise questions about why Mitchell was not ejected, while Roosters coach Trent Robinson was already furious that the fullback was only a sin.

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