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What is the World Cup concussion protocol? Additional substitutes allowed at Qatar 2022

Chris Byfield

| Last updated 

What is the World Cup concussion protocol? Additional substitutes allowed at Qatar 2022

The Qatar World Cup kicked off on Sunday and with it, a brand new FIFA rule has been introduced.

The first ten minutes of England’s opener versus Iran was marred with controversy after centre-back Majid Hosseini and goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand collided heads in the box.

Beiranvand, who appeared visibly distressed and received extensive treatment, carried on playing for a few minutes before being forced off on a stretcher with a potential concussion.

Substitute Hossein Hosseini ultimately came on in his place, to become the first concussion substitute in World Cup history.

But what are the rules around concussion substitutes?

Concussion substitutes

Each team will be permitted to use one concussion substitute per match.


The law states that if a concussion is suspected a player must be removed for assessment and treatment without it affecting the five regular substitutions teams can make.

To help determine whether a change should be classified as a ‘concussion substitute’ medical staff will be at each game to review video footage and check if the injury is likely to have led to a concussion.

In turn, each country can put the health of their players first without having to impact their five permitted substitutions.

Moreover, if a side were to use a concussion substitute, the opposing team will also be allowed an extra change to avoid any extra advantage.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, England, Football World Cup, Qatar

Chris Byfield
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