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Hammers boss sends out risk-reducing suggestion

 

Bobby Charlton diagnosed with dementia

David Moyes wants to see a training football developed which can be headed without the current alleged risks that it may contribute towards eventual dementia.

The issue has been in the headlines over the last week with former legendary Hammer Sir Geoff Hurst calling for kids to be stopped from heading the ball.

That of course could lead to the game being changed entirely  in the future and the Moyes idea therefore should get some serious consideration.

It represents a challenge to sports companies but could become one of the most worthwhile of recent years should they be able to create one that causes less long term damage to players.

Following the death of World Cup winner Nobby Stiles and the diagnosis of teammate Sir Bobby Charlton, the Professional Footballers’ Association is creating a taskforce to further research the problem of brain injury diseases in football and their causes.

Speaking to reporters Moyes said: “I am amazed that the likes of Adidas or Nike haven’t come up with a training ball, a heading training ball or something, we don’t want a balloon, something that is the same sort of weight that we can use for heading practice.

“I think obviously we are in a generation that could be affected, we are not sure exactly. We have to remember my generation came through with a lot of heading of the ball, head knocks over the years, I don’t think football is quite that way now.

“Going forward we need to make sure things are ok, maybe with regular testing or something like that for people of our generation so that we can make sure we do catch it early, I don’t know if that will make it any better or not.”

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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

2 comments on “Hammers boss sends out risk-reducing suggestion

  1. Perhaps we already have such lightweight balls.
    Jeff Astle, Geoff Hurst, Jack & Bobby Charlton, Martin Peters and all players of their era were used to playing with cannon balls. The only balls in town. Heavy, dubbinned leather. Even heavier when wet. The idea of practice was to toughen up the head and neck muscles and if they could miss the laces with the forehead – much the better. It was really only during the 70’s that plastic coatings began to help – balls still heavy, even more so when travelling at speed. In the 80’s and after, the balls started to be made from lighter, synthetic materials and laces disappeared. Since then there has not been the requirement to strenghthen up the muscles and acclimatise to the hammer blows of the ball.
    Not saying that repetitive heading is good for anyone. But the idea of ‘lighter’ balls is already with us.
    COYI

  2. In addition to the heading of the ball, there’s also the increased chance of head clashes (plenty in yestedays Spurs/Man City match).

    The film Concussion dealt with a surgeon’s fight to get head-butting removed from the American ‘football’ game. The medical evidence was overwhelming.

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