Kevin Kilbane: “Football has turned its back on concussion”
Former Republic of Ireland international Kevin Kilbane believes the blasé attitude towards head injuries in football needs to change.
It follows the confirmation from medical experts that Liverpool goalkeeper Loris Karius suffered concussion during the Champions League final.
The costly blunders made by the keeper Karius were likely the result of a concussion after he was at fault for two goals in the 3-1 loss to Real Madrid last week.
Karius did not receive treatment after suffering the head injury and was not withdrawn from play. Kilbane hopes that this will mark a turning point in how concussion is dealt with in the professional game:
“Football in general has basically turned its back on concussion for probably two long; it’s the old adage of ‘its fine, he’s grand get on with it”
“Lads have taken an elbow, taken a knock to the head it’s just get on with it, we rarely see this type of incident and it won’t be a regular occurrence in every game but when it happens we have to respect it, we have to respect concussion in general.
“It hasn’t been the case across the course of my career, there’s a reluctance to even talk about it, there’s a reluctance to recognize it at times, this highlights an issue that has been swept under the carpet for too long.”
Karius was checked into Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston at the behest of the medical team at the club because staff feared he sustained a head injury after an elbow from Sergio Ramos.
A signed statement from two experts at the hospital said: "After carefully reviewing game film and integrating a detailed history - including his reported present and immediate post-contact subjective symptoms - physical examination and objective metrics, we have concluded that Mr. Karius sustained a concussion during the match May 26, 2018.
"At the time of our evaluation, Mr. Karius's principal residual symptoms and objective signs suggested that visual spatial dysfunction existed and likely occurred immediately following the event.
"Additional symptomatic and objectively noted areas of dysfunction also persisted. It could be possible that such deficits would affect performance.
"We also note that Mr. Karius has reported significant and steady improvement since the concussive event, and we expect him to make a full recovery based on the results of the examination."