US bans heading for children under ten
The governing body of football in the United States has banned heading in Under-10 age groups.
The measure is one of a number of safety initiatives announced by US Soccer and will apply to all academies under its jurisdiction, including those of the national team and MLS clubs.
The guidelines resolve a legal case dating back to August last year, when a group of parents and players filed a lawsuit charging US Soccer with negligence in treating and monitoring head injuries.
Under the proposals, heading practice will be also be reduced between the ages of 11 and 13.
US Soccer also plans to introduce temporary substitutions for players with suspected concussion, although the full details of that particular proposal have not yet been finalised.
The lawsuit sought rule changes rather than any financial settlement and lawyer Steve Berman, who brought the case, has agreed not to appeal the dismissal.
He said: “With the development of the youth concussion initiative by US Soccer and its youth members, we feel we have accomplished our primary goal and, therefore, do not see any need to continue the pursuit of the litigation.”
The lawsuit was also filed against FIFA, but a judge ruled in the summer that the case against world football’s governing body had no standing.