Belfast Telegraph

Premier League will consider heading ban for Academy players

 

By George Sessions

The Premier League is looking into whether academy players of a certain age should be banned from heading a football and have emailed all 20 clubs in the wake of a recent study into the link between the sport and dementia.

Last week, a report published and titled 'Football's Influence on Lifelong Health and Dementia Risk' found footballers were three-and-a-half times more likely to suffer from degenerative brain conditions than the general population.

The research looked at 7,676 Scottish footballers born between 1900 and 1976 who were matched with 23,000 people from similar backgrounds.

Former player Lenny Johnrose, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in March 2017, called for children aged 14 and under to be banned from heading.

The United States is the only country in the world which has a similar ban, with children aged 10 and under not allowed to head the ball.

Johnrose said: "At least in America they have done something straight away. We're taking chances with people's lives and it does sicken me.

"I'm going to spend the next few weeks, months, however long it takes speaking to as many authorities as I can to try and get them to do something about it. I don't see the point in taking that risk."

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