‘I didn’t go to Nottingham Forest to be injured the whole time’ – Matty Fryatt reflects on injury nightmare


Former Nottingham Forest striker Matty Fryatt has spoken about his injury nightmare during his three years at the City Ground.

The 31-year-old was released by the Reds this summer, having not played a game since March 2015 due to Achilles issues.

It meant Fryatt was limited to just 26 appearances and six goals for Forest as three separate surgeries failed to solve the problem.

“Until I got injured myself and been through the troubles I had with my own injuries, you don’t really appreciate what people go through with injuries,” he said. “You just think ‘oh, they’re injured again really, they should be back’.

“You want to be out there. You want to be around the training pitch. You don’t want to be missing training.

“And there’s nothing you can do about it.

“You’ve been told certain things, you’re going all over the world to see people to try to help this thing. You just want to be out on the pitch to show your stuff.

Matty Fryatt in action for Nottingham Forest

“I didn’t go to Nottingham Forest to be injured the whole time. It is just so frustrating and annoying, and there’s nothing you can do about it.

“At the same time, you just want to go and show what you can do, but you can’t.”

Managers came and went during the time Fryatt was sidelined – with the front man not even getting the chance to meet Philippe Montanier before he was axed in January.

“The French manager that came in – I was off in the summer nursing the third surgery. By the time I’d done rehab elsewhere, at St George’s Park, and had come back to the club, the manager had been sacked,” Fryatt, who has been training with Walsall, told the BBC.

“You go through managers and players, and you just can’t affect any of it.

“You’re on the sides or not even at the club sometimes or training elsewhere or trying to get back fit but can’t alter anything, other than trying to get yourself right. For me, it has just been nigh on impossible to get fit again; something which I thought was so little to start with, has been such a major injury.”

Fryatt signed for the club from Hull City in June 2014, with Stuart Pearce at the helm for the start of the 2014/15 campaign.

He netted twice in Forest’s opening four Championship games as they made a promising start.

Former Nottingham Forest boss Stuart Pearce

Fortunes soon turned, though. Pearce was gone by the February, while Fryatt had been struggling since November, when his problems first started in a 2-1 defeat at Birmingham City.

“It was a really good start – Stuart Pearce was manager so you’ve already got fans onside. A lot of good signings came into the team and we got off to a really good start,” he recalled. “The first five games, we won four and drew one.

“And then for myself, and also the team, it faded out. Stuart changed and from a personal point of view, I picked up injuries and it was just downhill for me from there.

“The initial one was, 10 minutes before the end of the game against Birmingham away, I felt a slight knick on the back of my Achilles. Nothing too untoward.

“Then I trained on the Monday and just couldn’t run.

“I was thinking, ‘what’s going on here? I know it was a bit of a knock, but…’.

“Anyway, I played for two months with ongoing Achilles injuries, where I was on painkillers trying to get through games. In the end it was just unbearable.

“I was like a statue on the pitch and was thinking, ‘I’m doing myself no justice’.

Matty Fryatt scored a key goal for Nottingham Forest at Bournemouth - but was largely hampered by injury
Matty Fryatt celebrates scoring for Forest

“Then I had a rest from the March time until the end of the season, then from there had numerous surgeries.”

Asked what the initial prognosis was, Fryatt added: “They were saying, ‘do you think you could give it a go on Saturday?’! It was pretty much that.

“But then when they realised the extent of the injury, it was rest for two months and then at the end of the season I went to see a surgeon.

“After debating everything and discussions, decided to go with the surgery.

“The first one, a minor surgery, didn’t work. Then I went in for another surgery, quite major, where they removed the tendon, smashed up the bone on the injured Achilles area – the heel bone – reattached the Achilles and then was in plaster for a few months. Then I tried to recover from that.

“Unfortunately that surgery wasn’t successful.

“Then I got put in for more surgery to remove some bone that had been damaged from the surgery before – that didn’t go well, the third surgery.

“Before you know it, time has passed and it’s nearly been a year, not really getting anywhere with things. You’re trying to recover and time’s running out.”

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