Footy: My range of injuries lead me to reflect on cursed stars

By Jeffrey Paterson

Over the last few weeks of school holidays, I’ve been wondering if my fingers and hands will hold up this footy season. Ever since I’ve started playing footy I’ve had 4 broken fingers and I’ve dislocated 5 fingers at least 4 times each. Other than my hand injuries I’ve had a couple of broken ribs, and whilst footy season was up and running in ’08 I got appendicitis and had too miss 6 games !

But seeing as though I haven’t missed any more than 15 games I’ve been quite lucky when it comes to injuries, but these players I’m about to write about haven’t been as lucky.

Anthony ‘Kouta’ Koutoufides

In his prime Kouta was one of the most damaging utilities to play the game. He was well known for his strong marks and great foot skills, but I will remember Kouta for his amazing ability to win clearances usually running out of a pack with the ball in one hand! Kouta was favourite for the Brownlow in 2000 before clashing knees with Essendon’s Damien Hardwick in their round 20 clash in front of 91,000. He came back in 2001 and looked as though he had not lost any of touch; he ended up winning his first best and fairest that year. 2002 he started well again until round 15 against Richmond he did his knee again and after that he was never as good as he once was. Kouta played on until 2007 but I will remember him as a player who could’ve been rated with the likes Buckley, Voss, Hird etc.

Corey Mckernan

Mckernan was unlucky early in his career not through injuries but through not being able to claim awards due to suspension. Mckernan was a young high-leaping, agile and mobile ruckman and was voted the Rising Star in 1994 but earlier in the season he got suspended and therefore was not able to claim this award. After a solid 1995 Mckernan lifted his game another level in 1996 and proved himself as a real star of the game, at the end of the ’96 season Mckernan was equal 1st in the Brownlow with Michael Voss and James Hird but again, just like 1994 with the Rising Star, he couldn’t claim this award because of suspension earlier that year. In  2002 Mckernan was traded to the then cellar dwellers Carlton; that’s bad luck enough if you ask me. In 2004 he went back to North but was plagued with injuries. At the end of 2004 this once great ruckman called it quits.

Mark Coughlan

After Richmond’s horrible year in 2003, they were left with one shining star: Mark Coughlan. He was a star in a dreadful season for his team and ended up winning the best and fairest in 2003. But in 2004 Coughlan suffered the dreaded Osteitis Pubis (OP) which wrecked most of his season . In 2005 he had recovered from OP and was back winning positions and playing well. In 2006 things were starting to look really well for this young star again until Round 12 against the Hawks he did his ACL which saw him out for the season. During preseason training in 2007 he did his ACL again. Now Tigers fans, me included, were worried if we’d see this once best and fairest play again. In 2008 Coughlan was free of knee troubles but now he was struggling with hamstring problems. He ended up going over to Germany to get it fixed. When he got back he played the rest of the season out with Coburg. In 2009 he again had some knee problems, he got back in the team late in 2009 but was delisted at the end of 2009. What a terrible ending to a what could’ve been a fantastic career.

About jeffrey paterson

I'm 15 and I live in a little town called Numurkah. I play footy for Katunga under 17s and i play forward and back. I support the mighty Richmond Tigers and my favourite player is Dustin Martin because he wears my number 36 ;).


  1. You have not broken your fingers four times.

    By the way, numbers 1-9 are written in word form, 10-whatever are written in number form ;)

  2. Steve Healy says

    Coughlan is the unluckiest player ever to play the game, or close to. I reckon he could’ve kept playing

  3. I reckon Primus was the unluckiest player but Jeff rejected the idea

  4. Steve Healy says

    The ox was really unlucky as well, 3 knee reconstructions.

  5. And Gambling issues :S

  6. What about that kid last year? No idea what his name was. Picked up in the draft prior to the ’09 season, was looking really promising, but then did himself a career-ending injury before he had hit the turf :-( Poor bloke.

  7. what about Rusling!
    dont get me started on poor Sean.

  8. Oh yeah Jarryd Allen, career-ending hip injury

  9. Matty Egan – most promising backman of 2007. Complication after complication with a broken foot that originated from an innocuous marking contest?

  10. Yeah thanks guys but this was on some of my favourite players that I think have been unlucky.
    And Josh I believe I have every time ive dislocated a finger my finger gets broken because people like to step on them :|
    Yeah I agree with you Steve, I thought Hardwick could’ve givin coughlan another coulple of years but it wasnt to be.

  11. Steve Healy says

    how can you have broken 4 fingers anyway? i’ve never actually broken anything to tell you the truth

  12. As I said Steve people like to step on them lol.
    I’ve never broken more then one at a time though

  13. Damian Watson says

    Great read Jeff,

    My uncle has broken about six fingers playing football a couple, some to the extent that they had to be amputated.

    I remember when Kouta was on fire in Season 2000 especially while the Blues were playing at home, his injury in Round 20 diminished our chance of a Grand Final that year.

    Didn’t he injure his knee in 2001?

    Michael Wilson is another that had a few knee reconstructions which interrupted his career and he certainly was a promising player

  14. Damo, you were no chance for the grand final in 2000 and you know it :)

  15. Steve Healy says

    yeah Michael Wilson was really unluckily, especially that incident in the 07 PF that ruined his career.

    by the way Josh, gambling issues are a separate thing. David Schwarz used to be my favourite player back in the day

  16. Thanks Damian,

    I’m pretty sure it was in 2002 when he did it again but I may be wrong I remember he did it against us it may of been in the semi final ? I remember him running around with a matress around his leg for most of 2001.

  17. Damian Watson says

    Of course we were a chance, that loss to Melbourne in the first week probably made all the diffrence, don’t forget we lost Silvagni in the Semi Final as well!

  18. Damian Watson says

    Yeah he injured his knee in the 2001 Semi and then didn’t play another game until round 15 the following season I think when he wore that mattress.

  19. What, he actually wore a mattress?

  20. It looked very similar to a matress Josh it was a massive thing. .
    Yer I should’ve known it was that game I went to it.

  21. Hmm well in that case, Boomer wore a mattress on his elbow for majority of this year because of one Daniel Jackson :|

  22. Last year*

  23. Damian Watson says

    I think it was a huge leg brace, Kouta was never the same after that injury.

    I think Corey McKernan was robbed on both of those occasions, both the tripping and kneeing incidents weren’t exactly intentional.

  24. Steve Healy says

    Ah what a great win that was against the Blues!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Almost as good as Melbourne’s win against Adelaide in the 1998 QF, what a game that was. Farmer and Neitz 6 goals each! final score 17.13 115 to 9.13 67

  25. I think everyone has nearly forgot how good Farmer was at the Dees he was a little star.

  26. Damian Watson says

    The two rookies Green and Bruce were the diffrence when the Dees beat us.

    Are you ever going to stop talking about that Melb-Adel game Steve? lol

  27. Steve Healy says

    never, Damo, never

    he was Jeff, he was a champion, I also remember in 2000 when he kicked 9 on QB

  28. Damian Watson says

    It’s hard to believe that all of those 9 goals came in the second half.

  29. Didn’t Simon Beaumont kicked 8 goals in a half of footy? I think i have the right person..

  30. Or was it Tim Clarke?

  31. Damian Watson says

    It might of been Simon Beaumont cause he kicked 8 in a match against Collingwood in 1999, don’t think it was Tim Clarke.

  32. Steve Healy says

    Scott Lucas kicked 7 in the last quarter of West Coast V Essendon in 2007

  33. Drew Petrie anyone? 8)

  34. Didn’t Jimmy Clement kick 7 or somethin goals once ?

  35. Possibly Jeff, I think he began as a forward at Freo before being traded. Will check that.

  36. Checked – his career high was 5, which he achieved twice in consecutive weeks in 1998. That year he got 27 goals, more than half his career tally of 51.

  37. Steve Healy says

    Clement kicked 27 goals in 1998, including 2 bags of 5 in consecutive weeks. he never kicked 7

  38. Steve Healy says

    hahah sorry Adam

  39. Damian Watson says

    Yeah I remember he kicked 5 for Freo against Essendon at waverley in the 90’s.

  40. No prizes for coming 2nd Steve :)

  41. Oh ok that sounds right

  42. Steve Healy says

    There is a prize for not knowing that I was beaten to it

  43. I have a great respect your ability to find accurate footy information, you just need to do it faster. :P

  44. Steve Healy says

    So do the Richmond football club

  45. Coming from a supporter of the team that won the last 2 wooden spoons.

  46. Who now have 3 of the best young players in the league

  47. Steve Healy says

    yeah, you cant deny the picks

  48. Thanks to their tanking, and the fact that they knew what EVERY SINGLE OTHER TEAM knew – that Scully and Trengove were the two best players in the draft.

  49. I think that Martin was the best in the Draft :D

  50. Steve Healy says

    at least we tanked at a good time, we tanked just before the Gold coast are gonna come in the draft and dominate all the picks

  51. Steve Healy says

    Guys, can we just keep to this thread, talking in 2 threads is really annoying me

  52. Agreed, and i feel bad for talking in Gigs’ thread.

    Cunnington was easily the best pick in the draft.

  53. Steve Healy says

    sorry, thread isnt really the right word

  54. Steve Healy says

    52- yeah right, he’s not even fit

  55. Damian Watson says

    Thanks for the link Adam.

    By the way tanking is a theory, not yet proven!

  56. Steve Healy says

    It was up until the last quarter of Melbourne V Richmond in Round 18. Even we almost won, should’ve cos it was marked after the siren

  57. status- craving chocolate cake

  58. It’s funny you should say that Danni…

  59. dont tell me your eating some…….

  60. Im eatin chocolate ice cream (well vanilla with chocolate topping ;))

  61. Steve Healy says

    I just ate a crust of bread

  62. beat u to that Josh. i ate that feeling depressed early in the Fed match. lol

    lmaoo steve

  63. I just ate some cookies :)

  64. Steve Healy says

    it was nice, I love crusts of bread

  65. hahahah Jeff that sounded so cute little kid cute lol..

    Really i always cut off my crust.

  66. Dont you wanna grow up strong and get curly hair Danni? :(

  67. Josh i have 2 hair straightener for a reason.

  68. Shucks thanks Danni lol
    Crust is the bomb

  69. Dont you wanna grow up strong? :(

  70. …ummm no not really id rather have cute feminine arms thankyou

  71. Why do you need 2 hair straighteners? And what does a hair straightener even look like?

  72. Steve Healy says

    what idiot would invent a hair straightener? people with curly hair should be proud

  73. Adam one hair straigtener is thin and the other is thick.
    One heats up in 5 second the other needs 20 minues but comes with an attached comb.
    one is pink the other is black.

  74. I am proud, i just hate my curly hair

  75. steve i dont have curly hair.
    my hair is between straight and wavy but its ugly wavy not pretty wavy.
    if i had prett wavey Vanessa Hudsens hair then i would never straigten it but i hate my hair.

  76. Steve Healy says

    ugly wavy and pretty wavy? Vanessa Hudsen? sorry Danni you’ve lost me

  77. Steve Healy says

    since there’s a hair straightener, is there such thing as a a hair waver and hair curler?

  78. sorry i mean vanessa hudgens!
    yes ugly wavy is my hair when i dont straighten it and pretty wavey is Vanessa’s hair

  79. Remember who you’re talking to Danni. Our brains are too filled with stuff about sport to remember important information about hair and celebrities.

  80. yes i have a hair curler.
    and there is a hair crimper too.

  81. Like my pick-up line hey Danni ? lol

  82. omg i swear the first time i heard it i was laughing so bad LMAOO

  83. :D good old Gillete lol.

  84. yes long live the Federer Gillete ads! :)

  85. Steve Healy says

    there is a hair curler? crimper?

  86. Good match from Fed today bounced back well after the first set.

    travel straighteners! They are a bit smaller than a medium sized stapler and run on battery and they fit ur purse!

  88. Steve doesn’t carry a purse. At least I hope not…

  89. yes i know after eating so much ice-cream then they cut off the game and ive got bite marks on my fist cos i was so stressed near the end, i just wanted it to be over with Roger in front!

  90. lol speaking of them i should get one…

  91. Steve Healy says


  92. Steve Healy says

    I dont carry hair straighteners or a purse thank you

  93. ROFL at comment 91

  94. Mum makes me carry her purse sometimes in the supermarket or whatever, really makes me feel awkward :|

  95. lol think about it, i could straighten my hair during half-time at the footy!

  96. ahahahahahhaahahahhahahahahahhahah
    Josh!! lmaoooo

  97. Hmmm sure Josh you beg her too let you :)

  98. lol i remember ditching my purse to my uncle at the launch when i got up to get our books signed.
    poor guy sat there with it till i got back.
    lol thats what he gets for laughing when my heel got stuck.

  99. Steve Healy says

    does that mean you’re coming to the footy with us Danni?

  100. Tip for those situations Josh:
    Do: Hide it, put purse in trolley
    Don’t: Hold it in two hands in front of your groin.

  101. Steve- no i told you i cant and stop making me feel bad.


  102. Anyway I’m off everyone, catch yas all later :)

  103. Seeya Adam ;)

  104. josh would you hold my purse for the whole day if i came to the footy? LMAOO

  105. Steve Healy says


  106. bye adam.

  107. Well we’re gonna have a splendid time at the footy won’t we boys? Ah yes we’ll meet Swallow as well, too bad you can’t come Danni..

    Thanks Adam, muchly appreciated :P

  108. If it means you’ll come, yes i would. Then probably ditch it on a seat and leave lol, nah whatever it takes

  109. Even if I bought my big hot pink one with the pink and silver rhinestone bling-bling all over it that’s says PRINCESS in huge letters on the front?

  110. Steve Healy says

    oh well, at least you’ve got purse-holding experience

  111. and stop using Swallow! thats just MEAN

  112. HAHA good 1 steve

  113. Damian Watson says

    Cya adam.

    My mum spends expensive money for her purse and carry bags, it’s hard to understand women lol.

  114. Oh shut up Steve

    Danni, whatever it takes. And surely you dont have a purse like the one you just described? :O

  115. LOL let me explain.
    we love shoes and handbags like you love cars?
    now u get it?

  116. Steve Healy says

    yeah whats the point of a purse when you can use a plastic bag? (even though its bad for the environment).

    I dont love cars

  117. Hmmm Cars are gun but footys better

  118. Damian Watson says

    Yeah but good cars are a neccesity in society today and last for years.

    Purses and hand bags are just boring accessories that usually break within a few years.

  119. Lol nah I don’t..but if u see one let me know.
    Its so cute that you would carry that bag just for me to come.
    But you know I cant and you know why I cant.
    Hopefully this year will pay off and once im in uni next thing u know
    You will be reading a headline and then
    The names
    Jon Ralph & Danielle Eid Under it.

  120. hahahahhaha steve ROFL
    no we love bags, they go with our outfits and we put all our stuff in them.
    Damo if u pay good money for your bag it shouldnt break.

  121. Danni, it’s absolute BS that you can’t come. Michael told me that his sister got a score of 99 something for year 12 and she went to heaps of Hawthorn matches. 99!! NINETY NINE!! And you can study at half time!!

  122. Steve Healy says

    wouldn’t you rather be an independent writer?

  123. Oh yeah, listen to her advice Damo! lol

    Haha imagine seein a girl carrying a plastic bag down the street. Bogan much

  124. My hat was my “bag” on school camp

  125. Steve Healy says

    purses and bags were only neccessary before the invention of pockets

  126. Josh trust me my parents will not let me budge this year. they already told me i need to buckle down one last time without any distractions which means no fun stuff LOL. IM even not having a party for my 18th im THAT focused on studying.
    i can always have a PARTY for my 21st but i dont get another chance at my Enter.

  127. Steve i have always wanted to work with Jon Ralph!

  128. Damian Watson says

    I don’t have a handbag Danni.

    99? thats a hell of a score!

  129. Like i said, look at Michael’s sister.

    Your not having an 18th? Aww, it would have been the North v Collingwood game too :( oh well

  130. Damian Watson says

    I might meet him this year Danni lol.

  131. Lol yeah Michael told me he was pretty much screwed coz its impossible to follow up his sisters score lol

  132. Steve Healy says

    my brother Paul got 98.2, and he wasnt really serious about studying either

  133. Hey Damo do you remember which Carlton player back-heeled the ball out of bounds in the Round 3 clash between North and Carlton in 2004? The free kick that led to Wells’ goal from the boundary

  134. Damian Watson says

    Was it Ryan Houlihan? those replays wwere inconclusive so I still doubt whether he actually made contact.

    Steve did you take pics of your holiday?

  135. Steve Healy says

    yeah I already put them on FB, but yeah I might now if it doesnt stuff up

  136. Yeah i thought it was Houlihan, but also thought it was Stevens.

    I’ve seen Steve’s pics on FB

  137. You didn’t even get a picture of the house at Manuka!!

  138. Steve Healy says

    I was only there for a little while! we didnt have time to go to the house

  139. Anyways I better go and read my lit book..Friday is looming

  140. Steve Healy says

    Yeah im off now too guys, ive gotta get up at 7 tomorrow

    The photos seem to be too big a file to attach

  141. Jeffery

    Enjoyed your post

    I think we must come from the same family, and share the same finger DNA.

    I think I’ve broken or dislocated 7 of my 8 fingers. Some more than once. Thankfully I’ve never hurt my thumbs. However I have broken my hand a couple of times. Most are cricket and footy related, although there are a couple of bizarre ones as well.

    My brother once broke both his thumbs in one cricket incident – a catch at fine leg – but that’s a story for another day.


  142. Yay for Cogs despite his shortlived career. We only saw a bit of him but what we saw we liked. He was a great inspiration to a whole lot of people, me included.

  143. Can’t be any more bizarre than when Gigs broke his nose doing a puzzle.

  144. Thanks John.

    Yeah it’s not very fun dislocating fingers.

    I’ve never done anything to my thumbs that would kill.

  145. Steve Healy says

    141- Yeah John, I remember you mentioned breaking a finger in loose men everywhere

  146. i have never broken or dislocated anything.. which is only b/c in lazy and dont like to move. lol

  147. Haha your a lucky one Danni it isn’t fun.
    Anyways guys i should be back on soon.
    Talk then ;)

  148. Funny, Jeff is the laziest person i know..

    Didn’t you have a broken toe Danni?

  149. Oh have you been thinking about my purse proposition Danni? ;)

  150. nope it was just blue and bruised and then it went away just like i said it would. didnt see a doctor or anything lol.

  151. Steve Healy says

    I’ve dislocated a finger a few times, just never broken anything

  152. lol ahahah
    nah its not gonna happen.
    im not like Mikey or steve’s brothers.
    if i dont study or not study enough im screwed. im not one of those hardy study and get A+ I have to work hard to get results.

  153. Steve Healy says

    you mean his sister?

  154. I was talking to an ex-teacher on Superfooty last night lol it was funny.

    Fine, i’ll take my own purse to the game then.

  155. ohh yeah sorry, his sister.

    lol make sure its pink josh

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