ENG Director médico del Watford FC

Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Emilio Lopez-Vidriero says he’s delighted to have joined Watford FC and already sees “the good amount of resources” at the club available to him to make a positive long-term impact upon the club’s frustrating injury record of recent times.

The Hornets’ newly-appointed Medical Director is a highly-experienced and high-profile practitioner.

Indeed, Dr Emilio’s private practice in Sevilla, Spain, has become a treatment magnet for many of the world’s top professional sportsmen and women.

His world-renowned clinic includes a team of surgeons, sports medicine specialists, physios and rehabilitators, all contributing to the peak performance of professionals at the top of their sport.

“I’ve had some excellent experiences during my career,” explains Dr Emilio.

“From a fellowship in Pittsburgh, USA, at one of the most important sports medicine centres in the world, to working with the revered Dr Cugat in Barcelona, where many of the world’s top football players have been treated, I have been able to construct my own clinic using the best experiences from around the world.”

An orthopaedic surgeon and consultant in sports medicine for many different professional sporting organisations, Dr Emilio has found professional sports people are drawn to the news of good work.

“Once your name becomes established, you find it is like this,” he added. “But this is the product of many years of study, hard work and the building of trust.”

“Our vision is that of a medical centre of excellence,” explained Hornets’ Chairman & CEO Scott Duxbury.

“A specialist Doctor will now oversee the process of getting us back to where we should be in terms of player care and treatment. The days of the senior physio running onto the pitch and then having the sole responsibility for making all of the key decisions around the training ground are past.

“We expect a brighter future for our medical work moving forward, and take great comfort from Dr Emilio’s years of top-level experience.”

Dr Emilio has been instrumental in prolonging the career of Spain’s most successful female swimmer in history, Mireia Belmonte, while his CV includes names and tournaments from across the globe.

“I’ve joined Watford because it is clear I can have a positive influence over the short-term and the long-term,” adds Dr Emilio.

“It is still early and there is a lot to be assessed but the positive messages are about the good amount of resource, both human and technical, that can be used and developed.

“As everyone understands, it is not only about the treatment of injured players, to fight the fires so to speak which I am here to do of course, but also to establish the best injury prevention programme in the sport.”

Dr Emilio will have a mandate to recruit as required and expects to provide a detailed update on the current injury situation early next week – and, for some, that will be a more positive picture than has been recently portrayed.

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