News chief sports writer Neil Allen caught up with midfielder Danny Rose this week to discuss the broken leg that threatens to end his season and his rehabilitation following the cruel blow.
In the third instalment of our four-part series, Rose admits no-one is to blame for his injury...
We saw it as a mini-duel in the heat of the battle at the time, sometimes winning those little battles can have a little edge – but it just went wrongDanny Rose
Danny Rose refuses to apportion blame on those involved in the injury which could end his season.
Referee Lee Swabey and Northampton midfielder John-Joe O’Toole received criticism from many supporters at the time.
But Rose insists the incident was ‘a freak’.
He said: ‘It’s no-one’s fault it happened. It certainly will be a lesson for me, but I don’t put any fault on anybody.
‘I would say it was a freak. John-Joe took the ball first, I can’t really argue because he won the tackle.
‘With the drop ball, the referee clearly wasn’t sure who had the ball when he blew up for a head injury to Nathan Thompson. We were adamant we had the ball and they were adamant they had it, so it was “do you know what, let’s just contest it”.
‘We saw it as a mini-duel in the heat of the battle at the time. Sometimes winning those little battles can have a little edge – but it just went wrong.
‘He won the ball and the inside of my shin went underneath his foot and it’s pure impact.
‘Normally you see leg fractures when the foot is planted on the ground and all the impact comes in, but this was pure impact, both of us going bang into each other.’
Meanwhile, Rose reveals O’Toole contacted him the following day.
He added: ‘John-Joe tried to speak to me at the end of the game, but I had already left at half-time.
‘Northampton’s captain, Marc Richards, who has now gone to Swindon, is a good friend from my time there and he rang me on the Sunday.
‘Northampton had trained that morning and he told me John-Joe was not in a great way in his mind knowing what had happened and being unable to speak to me.
‘Then John-Joe rang me later that day. He didn’t know what to say, he just wanted to see if I was okay, and I reassured him there were no hard feelings.
‘He easily could have been the one that came off worse.’