9 Apr 2015

Phoenix suffer Griffiths injury blow

10:45 am on 9 April 2015

The Wellington Phoenix have confirmed that striker Joel Griffiths will miss the rest of the A-League season after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left leg.

Griffiths has scans yesterday which confirmed the injury.

The Wellington Phoenix striker Joel Griffiths celebrates scoring a goal.

The Wellington Phoenix striker Joel Griffiths celebrates scoring a goal. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Always the realist, Griffiths knew what the verdict would be but it was still a blow to hear it.

The 35-year-old will undergo an operation in the next four to six weeks once the swelling is reduced.

The setback could spell the end of Griffith's time with the Phoenix and potentially his football career.

"It has been one of the worst years of my life, football wise," Griffiths said.

"I hope I don't have to go out like this and if I have anything to do with it I won't.

"A lot of people have written me off in the past and I have proved them wrong."

"In the back of my mind this time they may be right but I will be doing everything possible to get back."

"I am a very determined person and when I want something I usually get it - just ask my wife!"

Griffiths has had a relatively injury-free career and is upset at the timing of this one as he was enjoying life in Wellington.

"I have absolutely loved it at the Phoenix where the culture is fantastic," he said.

"I was so down after the problems at Newcastle and what I found in Wellington was a breath of fresh air."

"I take my hat off to Ernie (Merrick) and Dura (Andrew Durante) for making the opportunity available."

"Those two put so much faith in me I am more upset at not being able to contribute for the rest of the season."

Griffiths also revealed that he had been offered a contract by the Phoenix for next season.

"The club put an offer in front of me and after discussing it with my wife I was going to sign another contract," he said.

"It (the club) is very special and I believe it has a great future."

Merrick said it was a disappointing way for the season to end for Griffiths.

"He was a great acquisition for our squad and it is a major blow for him," Merrick said.

"I have to say he is coping very well with what has happened and that is because he is an extremely positive person who fitted easily into our culture."

"Joel has always been fit and professional in the way he has looked after himself and I strongly believe he will come back from this and play in the A-League again."

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