Top News Varane Speaks On Need To Raise Awareness On Concussion

Raphael Varane, a defender for Manchester United, has acknowledged that head injuries have affected his body and emphasised the need to raise awareness among players about the risks associated with heading.

The Frenchman said he had sustained a concussion just days before playing in France’s 1-0 loss to Germany in the World Cup quarterfinals in 2014, as well as at his previous club Real Madrid when they lost to Manchester City in the last 16 second leg of the 2020 Champions League.

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My seven-year-old son plays football and I advise him not to head the ball. For me, that’s essential,” Varane told French daily L’Equipe.

“Even if it doesn’t cause any immediate trauma, we know that in the long term, repeated shocks can have harmful effects.

“Personally, I don’t know if I’ll live to be 100, but I do know that I’ve damaged my body.

“The dangers of headers need to be taught on all amateur football pitches and to young people.”

A study commissioned by England’s Football Association (FA) has uncovered evidence linking repeated heading of balls throughout a professional football career to an increased risk of cognitive impairment in later life.

The FA has begun experimenting with eliminating intentional heading from Under-12 games; other nations, including as Scotland, have outlawed heading on the days right before and after games.

The International Football Association Board declared in March that while more permanent concussion substitutions will be included in football regulations, individual competition organisers will still have the choice to incorporate them.

No matter how much the player says he wants to play, the medical staff have to veto it, because it puts players’ lives at risk,” Varane said.

“We also have to make the player understand that it’s not showing his strength to continue playing after a serious injury, but that the real strength lies in getting out, stopping playing and resting.

“This can be difficult for a top-level athlete to take on board.”

Varane continued by saying that his concussion symptoms kept him out of a few United games this season.

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