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21st Feb 2022

Leeds claim they did follow concussion protocols over Robin Koch injury

Callum Boyle

Robin Koch was substituted after suffering a head injury

Leeds United have issued a statement claiming that they did follow the correct concussion protocols when dealing with Robin Koch’s head injury at the weekend.

Koch collided with Scott McTominay early into the game at Elland Road, but he was deemed okay to continue despite being heavily bandaged up.

Just 15 minutes later, after returning to the pitch, the defender then sat down again and was eventually replaced during Leeds’ 4-2 defeat against rivals Manchester United.

The Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) strongly condemned the Whites’ decision to allow the 25-year-old to continue and said that they failed to “prioritise the player’s safety” as well as calling for the reintroduction of temporary substitutions.

Under the Football Association’s current guidelines, any player who sustains a suspected concussion should be replaced immediately – with an additional permanent substitutions allowed for such a circumstance.

But Leeds have since released an update on the health of Koch and insisted that they did follow the correct protocols when managing his injury.

It read: “Leeds United can confirm that following a clash of heads, Robin Koch passed all of the on-field concussion screening tests that are currently part of the Premier League protocols.

“The player was told if he developed any symptoms he should sit down on the field of play and would be substituted immediately, which is what Robin did in the 29th minute of the game.

“The medical staff at Leeds United have always been in favour of temporary substitutions for head injuries, as it would allow the staff more time to assess an injury and allow a period for symptoms to potentially develop.”

Koch himself also released a short statement confirming he felt fine. It said: “Thank you for your many messages. I wanted to support the team for longer yesterday, but unfortunately I couldn’t do it. Thanks to our medical staff for the good care. I feel much better today and will be back soon.”

Leeds were beaten by their biggest rivals at Elland Road on Sunday after goals from Harry Maguire and Bruno Fernandes put Ralf Rangnick’s side ahead.

Two goals in 51 seconds from Raphinha and Rodrigo brought Leeds level however Fred and Anthony Elanga’s finishes ensured bragging rights would go back to Manchester.

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