UEFA Want Extra Substitutions To Be Allowed For Concussion

UEFA have asked FIFA to change the rules and allow extra substitutions for players who are suffering from concussion to stop the issue currently facing football.

When Spurs played Ajax in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final, they may have lost 1-0 but the most worrying part of the game wasn't the result it was Jan Vertonghen's injury.

The Belgian suffered a head injury and was treated for a few minutes. After getting the all clear he went back to play but came back off the pitch almost instantly and had to be helped down the tunnel after being unsteady on his feet.

It brought into focus just how poor football deals with concussion and UEFA want FIFA to take action.

The European governing body have asked FIFA and law-making body IFAB (International Football Association Board) to look into allowing extra-time to assess head injuries and extra substitutes to replace those suffering from concussion.

In a statement 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 and to ensure appropriate diagnosis can be made without disadvantaging the teams affected."

Vertonghen was helped off the pitch. Image: PA Images
Vertonghen was helped off the pitch. Image: PA Images

Currently, under UEFA rules, referees must stop the game for head injuries and then medical staff have three minutes to assess the player injury and decide if they are concussed.

The English FA say players must be substituted if there are concerns that a player is concussed.

Other sports have come on leaps and bounds, certainly in comparison to football, over the past few years when it comes to tackling the issue.

Dan Biggar goes for an HIA during the 2017 Lions Tour. Image: PA Images
Dan Biggar goes for an HIA during the 2017 Lions Tour. Image: PA Images

In rugby union players are taken off the pitch for an HIA (Head Injury Assessment) by a match-day doctor and the player can be replaced temporarily and can return if they get cleared.

Players who have to be assessed have further assessment three hours after the match and again 48-72 hours after the initial incident.

If football does change its laws then it's expected that the extra substitutions could come into play in 2021.

Ryan Sidle

Ryan is a writer for SPORTbible. He covers all sport from football, formula one, cricket, rugby, tennis, athletics, mma and wrestling. He obviously hates YOUR football team and has no interest in synchronised swimming.

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