The Brisbane Broncos’ tumultuous season has gone from bad to worse with young star Xavier Coates suffering a suspected foot injury in training.
Coates’ injury news comes after what has been a horror week for the iconic NRL club, which has included Tevita Pangai Jr being suspended indefinitely and coach Anthony Seibold breaching COVID-19 protocols to attend to a family matter.
Interim coach Peter Gentle said Coates’ injury was in his foot rather than in his ankle, but was optimistic that the 19-year-old had avoided serious damage.
“We will have scans but it’s not as bad as first thought, it seems to be more in his foot than his ankle,” he said.
“They are thinking it might be ligament damage in his foot, so it will be only a week or two. Scans will determine that later today.”
Coates has been a rare bright spot in what has been a dismal season for the Broncos, earning Israel Folau comparisons from league legend Andrew Johns earlier in the year.
“He’s just one of those rare talents when the ball goes up near him, you know he’s going to come down with it,” Johns said on Nine’s Macca’s Golden Point in June.
“Very similar to Israel Folau when he played rugby league. Not only that, a couple of times when get the ball in space – how athletic he was.
“He loves the challenge and he loves the contact.
“Moving forward, I think he’s going to be a strike centre. I think he will start his career on the wing like a lot of great centres do, but eventually he will go into the centres.
“Once he does and gets some clean ball, and the Broncos work out how to use him in attack, look out.”