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Man Utd player wins £4.5m payout

A former Manchester United player whose career was ended when when he was injured in a tackle has been awarded more than £4.5m in compensation.

Ben Collett, 23, broke his leg in a reserve game against Middlesbrough five years ago, at the age of 18.

Boro player Gary Smith and his club admitted liability for the injury.

The total compensation will be decided when sums for future loss of pension and interest on past loss of earnings are determined at a hearing in October.

Sitting at London's High Court, Mrs Justice Swift awarded the player £4.3m and said the final sum payable to Collett was unlikely to be less than £4.5m.

Cup winner

Collett's solicitor Jan Levinson said the award "reflects Ben's talent and potential prior to the tackle as one of the brightest young footballers in the country".

He added: "Having said that, Ben would have preferred to have earned this through a full career in the game."

The match against Middlesbrough was Collett's debut for United's reserve team.

Manchester United's manager Sir Alex Ferguson described him as an "outstanding" player.

Collett joined United's youth academy aged nine and went in to become a member of the club's FA Youth Cup-winning team in 2003.

But his right leg was broken in two places in the match in May 2003.

The compensation will be paid by Middlesbrough's insurers.

'Fantastic focus'

Mrs Justice Swift said had it not been for the injury Collett would have been offered a three-year professional contract with Manchester United.

At an earlier hearing in Manchester Sir Alex said: "I thought the boy showed fantastic focus, a great attitude to work hard and they are qualities to give any player an outstanding chance in the game."

The court had heard that Mr Collett could have earned more than £13,000 a week, making a total in excess of £16m if he had played until the age of 35.

Mrs Justice Swift awarded Mr Collett £3,854,328 for future loss of earnings.

The figure for general damages for pain and suffering, loss of amenity and loss of congenial employment was £35,000 .

Past loss of earnings was put at £456,095.
 

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Stretford Ender
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just seen this on bbc website.

could open floodgates for many other law cases of injury preventing players to go on to earn mega-bucks

its all making the assumptions that he would have made it at United as many other players have showed that potential at that age to go on and do very little once breaking into first-team.
 

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tbh I think its kinda harsh on Middlesborough. I mean yes he got injured but he isn't the first player and he won't be the last to get an injury that prevents him from playing.
 

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If both SAF, and Gary testified on his behalf, then surely he stood a serious chance of breaking into the first team? I understand antdevil78's comment, but there must have been a chance of him making a decent career out of football. Even if not at United.

Having devoted a fair portion of his youth to achieving that goal, I think it fair that he be compensated now that the sacrifices he's made have suddenly been in vain, since he now has to find an alternative means of securing an income for himself.

Not to mention the fact that he's obviously not entertained any thought of tertiary education?!?
 

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I remember hearing about this kid but never saw him play.
According to Fergie he would have made it, or at least had a good chance.
 

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Jazz 16 said:
I remember hearing about this kid but never saw him play.
According to Fergie he would have made it, or at least had a good chance.
Yea, just like Luke Chadwick, Chris Eagles and many others who played a small part in the United team and then thrown out like yesterday's pork grinds.
 

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GeordieMancunian said:


Yea, just like Luke Chadwick, Chris Eagles and many others who played a small part in the United team and then thrown out like yesterday's pork grinds.
Those players might have played a small part in the United first team, but have shown that it is well worth holding onto the Youth team. There is always the possibility of producing another Beckham/Scholes/Neville...

The point that I was trying to make earlier, is simply that he stood a chance of making it as a top-flight footballer. Not necessarily with Manchester United. Any chance of that has now been taken away from him with one irresponsible challenge.:(
 

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If someone else had been injured do you think that the same would have been said about them? For example would Luke Chadwick have 'had a great chance to break into the first team' if he had been injured at that age, the chances against Ben Collett becoming a world class are probably high, however there is the slim chance that he could have made it.


I'd have been happy with £4.5m
 
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marty davidson said:
A former Manchester United player whose career was ended when when he was injured in a tackle .
How did his career end after he was injured ? He continued playing.

He was back playing in the U19s halfway through the following season, then spent 2004-05 in the reserves, 05 - 06 season played for NZ Knights in the Australian League and was then playing in the Dutch League in 06-07.
He played over 50 games for New Zealand Knights and AGOVV Apeldoorn.



By the way he was one of the players who scored when United won the FA Youth Cup in 2003!!
.
 

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Paddy decribed him as a 'Ryan Giggs type of player' along with Gary Nevilles and Sir Alex's backing does that not say it all, the boy was talanted, fair play to him for seeing the case through must be a traumatic for him.
 

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Tbh, this is over the top.

Hes not the only player thats been injured by a bad tackle, and he won't be the last.

Its not possible to say whether he would have made it as a top class player, even if some people say he had potential. We've heard that about Eagles, Chadwick, Martin and look where they've got to.

And as Sal said, it didn't end his career. So why has he received the money?

This could open a door to others. A door which shouldn't be opened.
 

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honestly, fair play to the dude, whether he deserved it or not. He had his leg broken playing and hustled the system and got his money, who am I to hate on him for that?!? lol
 
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I think the majority of people would do the same thing so good luck to him.

It's always sad when a players career is ended by injury (Except for Alf :p).
 
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-zuco- said:
I think the majority of people would do the same thing so good luck to him.

It's always sad when a players career is ended by injury (Except for Alf :p).
It didn't end his career though did it ?
He continued playing for another 3 seasons, although at a lower level, and played over 50 games more.

My view, if this had happened against a smaller team the amount could put a club out of buisness. Yes they are mostly covered by insurance but it could still financially cripple a club.

No doubt that Ben Collett should have been awarded compensation.
But £4.5 million ? Way over the top in my opinion.
Like 007 said, opens the door that shouldn't be opened and sets a bad precedent.
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Is Eduardo going to get compensation, if he's never the same again? I honestly dislike the idea of a team paying a player compensation. Its normally impossible to tell if someone hurt someone intentionally (unless your name is Roy Keane :D), so it makes the whole ordeal quite confusing, as to who should be paid, and who should not be. Also the quality of the player shouldn't have anything to do with the amount of money that player receives.
 
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I know what you mean Sal, but it must have been awful playing for a team much
lower in quality after spending so much time at United. He'd had it in his head for
years that he was going to make the big time and then suddenly his dreams are
snatched from him.

4.5 million is quite a lot of money though, probably over the top. But like I said,
most people would have done the same thing. It's the system that's to blame, not him.
 
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