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14 Mar 2021 09:17:10
What are people's opinions on the debate about heading in football and its links to dementia? I've been listening to Talksport this morning with Tony Cascarino who feels that it could well be forced out of football within the next decade.
Personally I think it's ludicrous to even suggest that heading is removed from the game. There are risks to health in every job and every professional sport and you know this when you sign up to it. An electrician can work all day knowing the dangers of his job just like a professional boxer/ MMA fighter can have their faces smashed up every few months but you don't stop punching in boxing?
Obvisouly it's horric that people do suffer as a consequence of heading in football but how many other sports and day to day jobs cause potential long lasting damage to the body as a result of it?
By all means call me naive because I probably am but I'm interested to hear everyone's opinion, especially that of the Eds 😊
Cheers all.

{Ed001's Note - it needs a lot more research, otherwise we are all just talking about something out of ignorance. So I have no opinion right now and am happy to be guided by people who have done some research. There are a number of alternatives to consider, not just removing it from the game. Headguards, for example.}

Agree1 Disagree0

14 Mar 2021 11:00:49
The thing is for the first 100 odd years of football no one knew that heading had the potential to cause long term damage so we all carried on in happy ignorance.

Now we are aware that there is a very real chance that there are long term effects from heading so we have the chance to look at sensible ways of minimising the risks and allowing adults to make informed decisions for themselves.

Ignorance is bliss but now the potenial danger is identified it wouid immoral to let kids of 3 to 17 make choices they are not yet equipped to make for themselves.
At 18 young people are free to smoke drink and pretty much make thier own choices and I think it wouid be wise and fair to include heading a football to that list until we know a lot more for sure.

I am sure those families of ex players who have watched a loved one suffer and in turn suffer with them would something to be done if possibl.

14 Mar 2021 11:34:17
I wonder if the very heavy leather balls used years ago caused the issue for the players suffering dementia now? Perhaps with the lighter modern balls it won't be such a problem for our players? That said, if a definite link is found, I just think players will adapt their game to use their head less frequently.

{Ed001's Note - the ball moves quicker now, which makes it more damaging.}

14 Mar 2021 13:39:14
I think it is a very difficult subject and needs to be thoroughly investigated. As Glenn suggested, it's part and parcel of the game. Are we talking about completely avoiding headers? That will be totally out of line. how do we deal with ball hitting the head? And where will this all stop, so tomorrow someone relates problems to the feet, knees to football then what?
If there is a definite link then may be we can put some process in place, we have all the statistics these days so if a player has headed the ball x number of times, he should have a mandatory rest for a game and get checked up medically, or something like that.
But it will be a very difficult situation to deal with.

14 Mar 2021 12:11:49
I considered the same thing Sally, maybe heavier balls were more dangerous but like Ed001 says maybe not.
We are only at the beginning of the enquiry and all possible causes and all possible solutions are worthy of consideration until we ultimately come up with the best possible answer, which of course we will in time.

14 Mar 2021 14:40:31
If there is a demonstrable link the game will most likely have to change. Everything changes as our knowledge increases - I can't imagine many parents happily sending their kids on the pitch to potential scramble their brains for later life. I know boxing is cited as an example where we do nothing but 1, the object of boxing is to cause damage to your opponent, football isn't and 2, Even if we accept that it surely cannot be too long before a civilised society decides that two men knocking the daylights out of each other is entertainment. Few boxers seem to me to have all their faculties after a full career. Are we going to see a critical mass of ex-footballers in their sixties sounding punchdrunk and do nothing about it?

14 Mar 2021 14:46:25
Back in the 70s there was ignorance towards the impact of heading the ball. No footballer signed up knowing there was any personal risk and you are seeing more and more players being diagnosed with dementia. I’m sure it wouldn’t have stopped them but I’m sure an motor racer knows the risk or an electrician but I can tell you a footballer back then didn’t know about heading risk and their families have been getting no support from club or PFA as it’s not a work injury. These footballers never earned what players do today.
In the olden days the pitches were poorer, weather wetter and the ball absorbed water making it heavier than any ball today. Also consider that at Arsenal they did huge amounts of heading training every day, the goalie just about always hoofed the ball in the air so heading was more common, ball far far heavier and awareness less. It’s totally different today and to be fair, kids shouldn’t be heading the ball at school while their skull is still developing etc. American football addressed the issue / addressing the issue and so should EPL. It’s football not head ball and i'd rather see the ball on the floor than hoofed in the air.
To say we should ignore the issue hotting players from the 70s is crazy and there is no reason for young teenagers to head footballs that often. Player the ball on the pitch like Cloughie preached rather than necessitating lots of heading. You can’t limit it but don’t do loads of heading. Raise awareness, it’s not a nice condition or nice to see it happen.

The heavier balls were dangerous - heading a water sodden ball from a Pat Jennings goal kick not as dangerous as a light ball in today’s game? Not convinced one bit. The ball today may be worse than a ball 5 years ago but not from the 60s / 70s and consider the amount of heading also and the terrible muddy pitches.

COYG - let’s stuff the Spurs today.

14 Mar 2021 15:59:31
Just because we've always done something doesn't mean we should always do it, is my view!

I remember it being fair game to barge the goalkeeper over the line if was holding the ball and big centreforwards use for that purpose and would do anything possible to force the keeper over the line with the ball in his hands 😀 Seems crazy now days I know.
The games evolved since then and will continue to evolve as long as it's still played.

14 Mar 2021 16:10:44
Hey SY mate brilliant to hear from you 😎😃😄😊🙂🤗😆😊😂😄😃😁.

14 Mar 2021 16:49:16
Thanks 62! Big afternoon for the boys.

16 Mar 2021 00:22:13
can not see football without heading.
Maybe a no heading outside the box rule?



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