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UEFA to ask FIFA to review current concussion protocol
- Personal Injury
UEFA will ask FIFA to consider allowing players to be temporarily substituted for another player if they are suspected to be suffering from concussion during the game. The new law will mean less pressure on medical staff on the pitch and will allow doctors more time to asses if a player is suffering with concussion.
The topic was discussed at UEFA’s executive committee meeting in Baku last week. UEFA will now approach both FIFA and the International FA Board (IFAB, football’s law-making body), to consider the change.
The proposal follows a recent incident with Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen, in which he had to be helped from the field during the Champions League semi-final after he had been cleared to continue after a collision with a team-mate. Tottenham have insisted that the defender was not concussed.
UEFA president, Aleksander Ceferin, said: “The health of players is of utmost importance and I strongly believe that the current regulations on concussion need updating to protect both the players and the doctors.”
I fully support any measure which protects players from what can be devastating effects of concussion unless it’s addressed early. Whilst this proposed new approach will help a full medical assessment to take place rather than being rushed I also have concerns that players may be allowed back on to the pitch if it’s a pressure game, when a very cautious approach in all cases of blows to the head should be taken as the player’s welfare must be paramount and symptoms can take a while to fully emerge. I will look out for further developments with interest.
Rachel Rees is a Solicitor Consultant in Personal Injury here at Potter Rees Dolan. Should you have any queries about personal injury issues or indeed any other aspect of this article and wish to speak to Rachel or any other member of the team please contact us on 0161 237 5888 or email Rachel directly.