The head injury concerns have increased after multiple issues in the last few weeks in Europe’s Elite leagues. Recently in the Premier League, Arsenal defender David Luiz continued to play with a fractured skull until half-time after a clash of heads with Wolverhampton Wanderers striker Jose Maria Gimenez.
So, Football’s lawmaking body IFAB announced one of the revolutionary ideas to protect the players. They announced that the concussion substitutions would begin the trial phase.
After “less than a year of detailed consultation with relevant stakeholders, medical concussion experts, team doctors, player representatives, coaches, competition organizers, refereeing and Laws of the Game experts” IFAB finally decided to introduce to protect the players. IFAB hopes that it will decrease the risk of players sustaining multiple head injuries in a single match and ensure teams are not facing any disadvantage when a player is told to leave the pitch.
Now, Premier League is set to become the first league in world football to allow concussion substitutes. The trial was approved at the shareholders’ meeting last week, and The Athletic revealed the top flight intends to implement the plan from matchday 23, i.e. on Saturday, 6th February.
How will the concussion substitution work?
During the trial, the two teams in a game will have two permanent concussion substitutes per game. If a change is made, the opposing team will also be allowed to make a substitution at the same time.
Why is the trial taking place?
IFAB are keen to trial concussion substitutes with the hopes of introducing them to the Laws of the Game. This trial will be used to provide feedback to IFAB in their annual general meeting in March.