Wednesday August 27th, 2014

FIFA is facing a class action lawsuit over its handling of concussions, according to reports.

The lawsuit, which was filed by a group of soccer players and parents in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, is not seeking financial damages.

The plaintiffs hope to force rule changes, including modified substitution protocols and limits on headers for younger players. 

The suit alleges that FIFA acted "carelessly and negligently" in its role as soccer's international governing body.

"FIFA and each Defendant acted carelessly and negligently in their positions as regulatory bodies for soccer and soccer players, including Plaintiffs and the Class. In addition, FIFA and U.S. Soccer knew or should have known that their actions or inaction in light of the rate and extent of concussions reported and made known to FIFA and U.S. Soccer would cause harm to players both in the short- and long-term."

FIFA has guidelines regarding how to deal with concussions, but no rules.

Criticism of the governing body's treatment of concussions intensified at this summer's World Cup in Brazil, when multiple players were allowed to continue playing after suffering severe head injuries, including Germany's Christoph Kramer in the final against Argentina. 

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- Chris Johnson

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