When videos of Shanghai Shenhua linchpin, Demba Ba popped up, the horrendous nature of the injury made it easy for us all, including his coach Gregorio Manzano to say that was probably the last we would see of the ex-chelsea striker on the field.
Apparently, he had suffered a fractured left tibia after tangling with Sun Xiang in their Chinese Super League local derby against Asamoah Gyan’s Shanghai SIPG.
Coach Gregorio Manzano said this after seeing the magnitude of the injury Ba sustained; “it’s maybe the end of his career”.
But Demba Ba has other ideas. He is confident of coming back even stronger than he left the field on the stretcher that fateful Sunday. “This is a really bad injury but I know I can overcome it. I won’t call time on my career, that’s for sure.” Ba told Radio Monte Carlo from his hospital bed in Shanghai.
Demba Ba was in devastating form for his club prior to this horrific leg break and had managed to rake in 14 goals out of 18 games so far and that’s a good return for the 31-year old Senegalese international.
In the last two years, Ba has been in good goal-scoring form; the reason the Shanghai based club had to dole out a reported £11.3m to snatch him from Besiktas where he scored 27 times out of 44 outings for the Turkish giants.
In fact he has replicated that form in China, if not a preponderance. He has scored 27 goals in 36 games for Shenhua since joining them in June 2015, paying back the confidence reposed in him by the club by scoring goals in sixes and sevens.
If Demba Ba hopes that he will come back stronger, it’s not out of nothing. He is not new to injuries, albeit the others not as severe as the present. He suffered an open-wound injury in May 2009 which kept him out for 88days, Patella problems which also kept him out for 84 days as well as a toe fracture in December 2014.
Aside this, he also holds that other players have had similar horrendous injuries and have been able to make come-backs.
“There are other players who have returned from similar injuries, like Hatem Ben Arfa,” Demba Ba told Radio Monte Carlo. “Something similar happened to me earlier in my career and the treatment options are much better now. I think I’ll make a speedier return this time.” Ba added.
Need I say more? The zeal, zest and verve Demba Ba has exuded in the face of all this anguish he’s going through is a clear indication of the mental and physical prowess of this fine wine who ‘still tastes great’ even at age 31. Yes, I mean he is still scoring at will at an age where is supposed to be at the twilight of his career.
You said you’ll come back and I trust you will: Eduardo came back. Aaron Ramsey came back. Djibril Cisse came back. Alan Smith came back. Luke Shaw has come back and has started playing.
And surely, “ Ba can’t be barred. Ba will be back!!!”.
By: Isaac Asempah/ @ikeasem