Sheffield United youth player suffers suspected double leg break in Youdan Trophy final

Last year's U-16 winners Seattle Sounders. Photo by Glenn Ashley.
Last year's U-16 winners Seattle Sounders. Photo by Glenn Ashley.

A young footballer has been taken to hospital today with a suspected double leg fracture sustained during the Under 14s final of the Youdan Trophy.

He was injured during the Sheffield United v Sunderland game at the Sheffield Hallam University Sports Park this afternoon.

The incident happened with just a few minutes remaining when the player, who has not been named, accidentally collided with his own goalkeeper.

In light of the injury and with the score poised at 2-1 to Sunderland, both teams agreed to end the game early and the north east team was declared the winners.

Tournament director Dean Mohareb said: "It was very unfortunate. The goalkeeper slid out to clear the ball and they came together.

"He was taken to Sheffield Children's Hospital and I believe we have had it confirmed from a member of our staff there that he has a double fracture to his right leg.

"He is due to have an operation later tonight and is expected to make a full recovery.

"The medical teams responded immediately and we wish him all the best."

The incident follows another player injury yesterday during an Under 14s match between Crystal Palace and Rangers.

A Palace player was taken to Sheffield Children's Hospital with whiplash but later discharged.

Mr Mohareb said: "He headed the ball and in the process injured his neck. But he was fine and let out of hospital later."

Almost 900 players from some of the world’s biggest clubs, including Manchester United, and teams from as far away as America, Japan and South Africa have taken part in the tournament, which is designed to showcase the game’s best new talent.

The Trophy takes its name from the man behind the game’s first interclub tournament played just once at Bramall Lane in 1867. It was sponsored by local entrepreneur Thomas Youdan and won by Hallam FC.

Trophy organisers You-Are-The-Ref.com believe it’s Sheffield position as the city that invented the game that makes the tournament such a big draw for foreign teams.

*In October 2016 the Government’s Intellectual Property Office granted permission for the Youdan Trophy’s organisers to register the competition’s name as a trademark. The application was opposed by Hallam FC. The club says there is no link between the event and the original tournament held in 1867, and has lodged an appeal against last year’s decision. A new ruling has yet to be made.