SUBS’ HEAD START
THE Premier League have agreed to introduce concussion substitutes from next weekend.
Clubs voted for it to be trialled at a shareholders’ meeting yesterday.
Arsenal’s game at Aston Villa next Saturday lunchtime is the first match of the trial, which will also include the FA Cup fifth round and
Women’s Super League. The Premier League will be the first competition to allow teams to make up to two extra substitutes for head injuries.
The opposition will be allowed an extra change at the same time. In a
joint statement the Premier League and FA said: “With player welfare the priority, the protocols will allow a maximum of two concussion substitutes to be used per team, with the opposition side able to use the equivalent number.”
FIFA have agreed to trial extra concussion substitutions at next month’sWorld Club
Cup in Qatar amid growing concern about the long-term risks of heading the ball.
England head coach Gareth Southgate will take part in a study by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine into possible links between football and dementia, having spoken in the past about his fears of getting the disease himself. Southgate, below, said: “Our involvement is essential if we are to have a greater understanding of this issue. “Having turned 50 last year, I am now eligible to take part in the HEADING study, which could provide crucial and valuable insight.”