English FA boss to push for concussion subs rule at FIFA Council meet

October 23 – English Football Association chairman Greg Clarke wants concussion substitutes to be introduced “as quickly as possible” in the wake of a highly publicised report which found a higher incidence of neurodegenerative disease among former footballers than in the population as a whole.

The study,  ‘Football’s Influence on Lifelong Health and Dementia Risk’ (FIELD) which was commissioned by the FA and the Professional Footballers’ Association in November 2017, was published on Monday and Clarke is to present its findings to Thursday’s FIFA Council session in Shanghai which he is attending in his capacity as a FIFA vice-president.

“One of the things we’re pushing on, and I’ve spoken to FIFA and UEFA about this, is to introduce concussion substitutes as quickly as possible,” Clarke told Britain’s Digital Culture Media and Sport committee.

“If anyone has a head injury you don’t just want to have a doctor looking at them quickly and saying ‘you’re OK’ or ‘you’re not OK’ – you can send someone else on to play while that player is assessed to make sure we move away from time pressure on doctors to make really important health decisions.”

Football’s law making body, the International Football Association Board (IFAB), was discussing concussion at a meeting of its football and technical advisory panels in Zurich today, with a view to introducing concussion substitutes next season.

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