It’s no surprise to me that clubs are still unaware of the protocols regarding head injuries during games.
We saw a prime example of this during the Leeds Utd v Sheffield Utd game this past weekend.
There was a great deal of confusion when George Baldock of Sheffield United received treatment for a head injury.
I thought that this was an ideal opportunity to make use of the concussion substitute so that the appropriate tests could be carried out by a doctor.
Leeds didn’t take advantage of the same at the time, and the player continued for a further 11 minutes before being replaced.
In the same game, Sheffield Utd immediately substituted Jayden Bogle when he suffered a head injury.
Clubs clearly have a duty of care towards their employees and for me this is an area where absolutely no risks should be taken.
Finally, to improve the communication by referees, I would like to see the introduction of a third coloured card – say blue or green – that informs everyone that a concussion substitution is taking place, because it’s not always that obvious.
The scenes during the Cadiz v Valencia game were sad indeed, and when an incident of this nature takes place, the referee should be joined by representatives of both teams and a representative of the league if one is in attendance.
This is usually an appointed Match Delegate. The stadium controller and the Match Commander will also be involved in the meeting.
In pre-match planning, a meeting room is always organised and available in special circumstances, and they may be following the appropriate protocols laid down by the Spanish league and the Federation.
In normal pre-Covid 19 conditions, the safety of supporters and their conduct will be considered.
If the game is abandoned, then the safe egress from the stadium for the supporters must be planned. eg gates opened, transport etc.
What will happen from this point is Valencia’s walk off will be considered a special incident and it will be reported and investigated thoroughly.
The fact that the game was resumed will normally have meant that the circumstances have been carefully considered by the special group of people in the stadium at the time, and the referee will act on their advice.
Clearly, we’ll hear much more about it over the coming days, but it isn’t a good look for Spanish football.