The suit states that no rule limits headers in children' soccer, and children are often taught to head the ball from the age of three. A dedicated youth player might sustain 1,000 headers per year, and a high school player more than 1,800 headers.
The lawsuit seeks the following:
Require FIFA and its U.S. affiliates to implement up-to-date guidelines for detection of head injuries and for return to play after a concussion.
Regulation of heading by players under 14 years old.
A rule change to permit substitution of players for medical evaluation purposes.
The lawsuit alleges that these groups have failed to adopt effective policies to evaluate and manage concussions, a common occurrence at all levels of the game. They also claim that a lack of effective policies poses a greater danger to women and children players, who are more vulnerable to traumatic and long-lasting brain injury.
Plaintiffs are represented by Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP.