IT was pleasing to see James McCarthy of Everton, sitting up cheerfully, in his hospital bed last week, saying the operation on his broken leg had been successful.

Everyone will wish him a speedy and complete recovery from his horrendous injury when he clashed with Solomon Rondon of West Bromwich Albion.

Rondon was in tears immediately the incident, having heard McCarthy’s leg break when he kicked it, but he had done nothing wrong.

As he went to kick the ball, McCarthy came in with leg outstretched in an attempt to deprive Rondon of the ball.

There was no way in which Rondon could have stopped his kick – instead of the ball he kicked McCarthy’s leg with full force.

This illustrates sadly, something that I have mentioned before – because someone gets injured, it doesn’t always mean there has been a foul.

Often this happens when two opposing players go to play the same ball, one might be stronger than the other who goes to the ground holding a leg.

No foul has been committed despite the injury, but hands go up asking for a free-kick from the injured player.

Sometimes it is even the other way, the player who gets injured is the one who has committed the foul.

There are cases of head injuries when two players, sometimes even teammates, go to head the same ball.

We also have heard of the untimely death of a former West Bromwich star, Cyril Regis.

Anyone who saw him play will know the he was big and strong and with his excellent balance, opposing players would often bounce off him, as he burst through their defence.

Just because someone falls to the ground after a contact, it doesn’t necessarily mean an offence has been committed.

All referees are taught to be mindful of the safety of players, but we have to accept football is a contact sport.

That doesn’t excuse those who are aggressive, reckless or use undue force, but in the normal course of any match, accidents can happen.