Paddy McCarthy has been with Crystal Palace since the start of the 2008 season, but it’s beginning to look as though his stay with the club may well be doomed to end in sadness.
Despite being just 32, the Irish international has barely played a minute of competitive football for us in years, thanks to a raft of serious injuries. As a much-loved member of the squad, he’s been given plenty of time to get his body back to full fitness, but just moments into his Preston North End debut, he suffered yet another massive setback.
Having been given a starting role for Preston against Sheffield Wednesday, the former Palace captain attempted to make a challenge for the ball, but managed to jar his ankle and knee simultaneously, leading to a suspicion that he has indeed medial ligament damage.
Whilst he may never have been described as the most cultured of central defenders, Paddy’s Championship experience has always lead to interest in him from the second tier, but in reality, this injury, should it indeed turn out to be as serious as first expected, may be the final straw for him on a personal level.
His leadership qualities have always been a source of great comfort for the management staff in SE25, but the strain he’s put his body under over the last three years will have taken a massive toll. Of course, it’s not for me or anyone else to suggest when it may or may not be time for Paddy to hang up his boots, but as a concerned onlooker, you have to wonder how often he can keep on building himself up for a return to first-team football, only for it to ultimately end in a huge sense of disappointment.
Let’s keep our fingers crossed for a quick recovery this time.