West Coast defender Jeremy McGovern is no certainty to play again this year following his painful rib injury, but ruckman Nic Naitanui could return as early as this week.

McGovern spent three nights in hospital before being released on Tuesday after breaking his ribs in Saturday’s 18-point loss to Geelong.

The four-time All-Australian underwent surgery on Monday to have a plate inserted and no time frame has been set on his return.

Meanwhile, Elliot Yeo, who has only ever had bruised ribs, sympathised to what Gov would be going through while recalling that sickening collision between Nic Naitanui and Freo’s Aaron Sandilands in 2016 which resulted in Sandy copping not just broken ribs but also a punctured lung.

“It happened right in front of me,” Yeo told Clairsy & Lisa, describing how Sandy’s let out a frightening gasp (almost a roar) that we don’t think Yeo will forget…

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West Coast (1-12) have nine games remaining this season.