Reading FC striker Nelson Oliveira opens up on gruesome injury

Oliveira required surgery

Nelson Oliveira believes Aston Villa’s Tyrone Mings “100% could have avoided” the challenge which led to the striker undergoing surgery.

Norwich City loanee Oliveira received urgent treatment on his Reading home debut following five deep cuts and a broken nose after Mings allegedly stamped on his face during Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Madejski Stadium.

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No foul was given at the time and as referee Geoff Eltringham was believed to have stated in his match report that he had seen the incident during the game, the FA cannot review any footage meaning Mings escapes with no punishment.

Tyrone Mings received no punishment

Oliveira is set to miss this weekend’s trip to Sheffield Wednesday following the horror clash and will have to play in a specially designed face mask whenever he next returns to the pitch.

But he had some strong views on the clash.

On his feelings at the time…

In the game everything happened too quick. I remember turning with my first touch, rolled the guy (Mings) and after he grabbed me. I went on the floor and it should be a foul straightaway. But after I felt an impact on my face, I thought at the time it was maybe the knee because it’s not normal for someone to stamp on your face. That doesn’t happen a lot in football. I went off straightaway and there was a lot of blood everywhere.

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On if he has spoken to Mings since…

He text me straight after the game to apologise. When he text me I hadn’t looked at the video and the images. I will not say that he did it on purpose because that is not my job, the only thing I can 100% say is in my opinion, he could’ve avoided that for sure.

I can understand the supporters have an opinion but I think the best people to judge that are players because we play the game, we know how to fall down, we know how to move on the pitch. I think to know the opinion you need to ask some of the players and see what they say. I will not say it was on purpose, the only thing I can say is 100% he could have avoided what he did. I think it’s something he should avoid in the future.

My little cousin called me on Facetime and he said to his father, I don’t want to play football because he looks (at my face) and says, I don’t want to be like that.

I am very lucky. In the middle of all this bad situation I had a lot of luck because it was just my nose that was broken. It could’ve been much worse. It could’ve been my eye and I could be blind and not play again or it could be bones

Oliveira said he feels lucky not to be blinded

near my nose and my jaw. It could’ve been much worse so I’m happy.

What makes me a bit angry is that it is something that could be avoided. If I did that to a player and I know I could avoid it, excuse my language but I would feel like sh*t. That was putting my life in danger, I could be blind now. I would not just have to stop playing football but even for my life it would be really bad.

On no action being taken retrospectively…

I think it should’ve been a foul or at least he should book the player because it was aggression. I’m not criticising the job of the referee because it is not my job and I don’t have the right to do it. There are people in the country in the EFL and the FA that it is their job to judge these kind of situations. But this is not just about the referee or what the FA could or couldn’t do.

Everyone has looked at it in Portugal, Spain, Brazil, I received messages from everywhere because it went quite viral and all the opinions I received was that they don’t understand how it’s possible how that can happen in a football game. When you see the video in my opinion he could avoid what he did because the normal movement of his body was his left foot and after his right foot should be in front. He was looking down and saw my face on the floor. I want to avoid that happening again in the future.

As an example, if exactly the same situation happened to Harry Kane, what do you think would be done? Do you think the FA would look at that or say, the referee saw it so there is nothing I can do? It could’ve finished the career of Harry Kane but we will not do anything. There are a lot of people on Sky, I think it is a question that should be put on TV.

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For kids in this country that dream to be football players, these kind of things need to be avoided. The FA needs to take care about these situations. England is well-known for ‘Fair Play’, it is really a big thing in this country. But that was not fair play, let’s be honest. It’s not my job to say if it was on purpose or that the referee did a bad job but someone should look at that. I think in my country they would look at that for sure. I don’t remember something like that happening in 100 years in Portugal.

Oliveira was making his home debut

It is not to make justice because to be honest, I don’t really care about it. It is just to give an example to the kids in this country that want to play football in future. I would not like my son to play in England and get smashed in the face and needs to finish playing football because someone stamped in their face when they could’ve avoided it.

It could’ve been much worse. If I was here blind, I would be really angry and really upset but I have just broken my nose. It is not a good thing, but it is alright, I’ll be fine in one week, maybe a bit longer or less, but I will be fine. I’ve seen UFC fighters come out at the end of their fight better than what I was looking and I was just playing a football game.

He did it before to another player not long ago (Zlatan Ibrahimovic, in March 2017 and received a five-game ban). There are players that in their whole career never stamped on the face of anyone but this player, accidentally maybe, in two or three years has stamped on the face of two players. The FA, the EFL and the country needs to look at that. It’s as simple as that.

I think Tyrone Mings is a good player. He’s strong, he’s quick and he’s a good defender. But what he did was not good. That’s not being a defender, that’s not being aggressive, that’s not being a football player.

I understand the rules in England that when the referee sees it the FA can’t do anything but in life there are exceptions for everything. There are rules, but after there are exceptions if it something is so serious. For example if you kill a player, you will not go to the rules and say that the referee saw it, there is something that you need to go over the rules. They should look at this as it is not a normal situation.

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