Date: 12th January 2006 at 12:37pm
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The Republic of Ireland full-back Stephen Carr had surgery on a hernia in November at the same time as Alan Shearer – but while the Newcastle captain was back playing by the end of the month, Carr was still missing.

There were suggestions he had fallen out with Magpies manager Graeme Souness, and let’s be honest here – that WAS the case. But he claims he picked up a muscle problem.

Carr: ‘The injury has been a nightmare. I had the hernia op and felt good after that. But then I tore a muscle on my right side, so that was a killer for me. That was harder to heal than the hernia, and it was frustrating to miss so many matches.

‘The fans were probably thinking ‘It’s only a hernia, why’s he still out?’, but it was a problem on top of that has set me back. It’s happened to me twice now, with two reasonably long-term injuries which have kept me out for about three months.

‘Last season I had the knee problem; then this time it has been the hernia and the muscle problem. I’m hoping that’s the end of my bad luck, fingers crossed.’