A rule permitting additional substitutions for players suffering concussion could be in place as early as 2021, which would affect both Manchester United and Manchester City.
UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has confirmed plans are in place to improve the concussion protocols in football, after Europe’s governing body requested a review of the current regulations in May – which asked the IFAB and FIFA to prevent concussed players returning to the field of play.
Under current procedure from UEFA, a referee must stop play if there are concerns of concussion being suffered but the medical team only have three minutes to assess whether an individual is able to continue.
That differs to the FA’s rules, which state a player is unable to play on if there are concerns concussion has been suffered.
FIFPro, the worldwide organisation representing professional players, is also pushing for change after Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen was allowed to return to the field before it became clear he could not continue – and Ceferin admits he feared the worst in that situation.
“After Vertonghen’s situation I was scared that something would happen,” he said.
“Because it was clear when he came back that he didn’t feel well. He could die there.
“We will have discussions with FIFA about it to change the laws of the games. Assessment is easier [in 10 minutes]. Now it is crazy. And you can die because of that.
“I don’t see it as a problem. FIFA is also interested in solving this issue. If something were to happen we would regret it forever.
“You have to do something. And if it helps one out of a million players, you did everything [you could].
“The rule change wouldn’t influence the game, change the game or make it less interesting. Now it [the situation] will move. FIFA is very, very interested in this.”