Heading in football could be o...


Heading in football could be outlawed in ten years | John Coleman

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John Coleman says he can see heading being outlawed in football in the next decade. 

The Accrington Stanley boss believes it could be a solution to the concerns linked to head injuries and illness as a result of heading the ball.

A report released yesterday indicated that professional footballers were at an increased risk of developing dementia, depending on a variety of factors.

They include the length of their careers and the position they play in.

The research, undertaken by academics at the University of Glasgow, showed outfield players were four times more likely than ordinary members of the public to develop a neurodegenerative disease.

It considered the health records of 8000 former professional footballers in Scotland.

This stretched to five times more likely for defenders, but goalkeepers were similar to the general public.

Rule change 

Now Coleman - who managed Sligo Rovers for a spell in 2014 - says he can see a scenario where heading in football is outlawed altogether.

"Going forward, I wouldn't be surprised, in ten years' time or whatever, that heading would be outlawed completely," he told Sky Sports.

"People think maybe that's a drastic solution but we've seen other changes in football that people didn't we'd get around and we have."

Coleman suggests that given the way has gone, it may not make that big a difference for certain teams.

"A lot of the game in the Premiership is played on the floor, they very rarely cross the ball anymore, they try and play through the lines and go around the side of teams so we'll see.

"We just have to take on board what we're told and try and stick to that and be mindful of the players' safety."

"I think it'll start in the kid's football and develop into men's football."

Dr Willie Stewart, who led the research, said football authorities should consider whether heading is 'absolutely necessary' in the game.

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Accrington Stanley Football Heading Football Health John Coleman Sligo Rovers Soccer

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