Christian Petracca leaves the field in pain during Melbourne's loss to Collingwood in round 13, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

MELBOURNE superstar Christian Petracca is set for a stint on the sidelines after suffering serious injuries in a collision during the Demons' King's Birthday loss to Collingwood

Petracca was taken to hospital after the game, following a marking contest late in the first quarter where he was kneed in the ribs by Magpies captain Darcy Moore. 

He was assessed at quarter-time and was given pain relief, before returning to the field in the second quarter. However, he was too restricted to continue playing and he was subbed out of the game at half-time, and his pain levels increased at the main break. 

Scans revealed Petracca had suffered four broken ribs, a lacerated spleen and a small puncture to his lung in the incident. He underwent surgery on Monday evening and remains in hospital recovering. The extent of his layoff will become clearer this week. 


The 10th-placed Demons, who have lost four of their past five games, have the bye this weekend before facing North Melbourne in round 15, followed by a trip to the Gabba to play Brisbane in round 16. 

Melbourne football boss Alan Richardson said Petracca's health was the No.1 priority as they assessed his return to play. 

"The next few weeks will be crucial, and we'll be monitoring his progress closely to make sure he heals properly and fully. As his recovery progresses, we will look towards a return to play timeline,” Richardson said.

“He's obviously an extremely important player for the team, but his health and recovery are our top priorities right now."

Christian Petracca on the bench after his collision with Darcy Moore in round 13, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

Melbourne coach Simon Goodwin was optimistic after the game that Petracca had not suffered a major injury, and explained the decision to allow Petracca to return to the field in the second term despite his obvious discomfort. 

"Like anything with a broken rib or a cracked rib, you get some pain relief and see how you can go on," Goodwin said.

"That's the standard process with working through these types of injuries, but it was pretty evident he wasn't going to be able to play on so we just pulled it straight away at half-time." 

The injury is set to end Petracca's streak of 145 consecutive games, stretching back to round seven, 2018.

It was the second-longest active streak of games, behind only Collingwood defender Jack Crisp's 227 games, which now ranks second all-time behind Melbourne ruckman Jim Stynes' 244 games after he surpassed Demon Adem Yze's 226-match streak on Monday.