Gary Lineker calls for ban on heading in training at ALL levels

Gary Lineker calls for ban on HEADING in training at all levels, claiming ‘there is absolutely no reason’ for it as research points to shocking increase in neurological diseases in former footballers

  • Gary Lineker has become the latest big name to speak out on heading the ball 
  • Calls are mounting, urging the powers that be in football to ban heading 
  • Research shows a shocking increase in the likelihood of neurological disease
  • Sir Geoff Hurst has also called for a complete ban on heading practice in training

Gary Lineker is leading the call for football to abandon heading during training sessions, following proven research of former players being increasingly susceptible to neurological diseases.

Lineker’s words come off the back of Sportsmail’s recently launched campaign to tackle football’s dementia scandal, calling for meaningful action in the sport to address the long term effects of heading the ball.

Speaking this week on the topic, Lineker has outlined how he only ever used to head the ball during matches after repeated aerial challenges as a teenager ‘worried’ him.

Gary Lineker has become the latest big name to speak out on the effects of heading the ball

Lineker has now called for all players, past and present, to back the idea and force football into making a change for the health benefits of all those involved. 

‘There’s absolutely no reason to head the ball in training,’ Lineker said during an interview with the Telegraph.

‘I headed it a lot in my teenage years, which worries me, but very rarely after that as it seemed unwise. Only ever in games. All players should back this.’

Lineker insists there is ‘absolutely no reason’ to head in training, and he only did so in games

Studies have found that those who played the game professionally are 3.5 times more likely to die from neurodegenerative disease than the general population – a shocking statistic that needs to be addressed urgently.

Sportsmail columnist Chris Sutton is at the forefront of the latest campaign, having courageously spoken about how his father Mike, also a former footballer, is dying of dementia.

Sportsmail has also requested the PFA to appoint a dedicated ‘dementia team’ to deal with concerns of those connected to the game and to help fund Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Connect support line. 

Lineker is not the only high profile former star to voice a strong opinion, after English football royalty Sir Geoff Hurst called for a complete ban on heading the ball. 

Footballers are increasingly susceptible to brain issues given how much they use their head 

More and more people are talking about it, and more pressure is going to be put on governing bodies to do whatever they can,’ Hurst, 78, told The Telegraph. 

‘The danger for me is the amount of times you head the ball in practice and not in a game. Going back, I wouldn’t do the practice. I would cut that out tomorrow.

‘At West Ham, we had a ball hanging from the roof. You were heading that 15, 20 or 30 times in the space of 10 or 15 minutes.’ 

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH: SPORTSMAIL’S CAMPAIGN TO TACKLE DEMENTIA 

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ‘He’s a shell, he can’t get up… he’s just lying in a nappy’: Chris Sutton opens up to Martin Samuel on his former footballer dad’s battle with dementia and how the game is turning a blind eye

JOSEPHINE SUTTON: The specialist said my husband Mike had severe brain damage caused by heading footballs… if he had any realisation of what dementia has reduced him to now, I know he would feel humiliated  

MARTIN SAMUEL: Headaches after just eight games? Thiago Silva’s revelation about ‘non-stop aerial duels’ should have set alarm bells ringing… is it too much to ask to explore this conversation to its logical end?

EXCLUSIVE: Football could soon be FORCED to introduce rules to tackle the risk of brain injury by the Government as MP admits he is ‘amazed’ that authorities have not faced a lawsuit over inaction  

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: ‘It was fury that drove me at the start’: Tireless campaigner Dawn Astle, daughter of former West Brom forward Jeff, wants brain degeneration in footballers to be declared an industrial disease

RICHARD THOMPSON – SURREY CHAIRMAN: Dementia is Britain’s biggest killer and something must be done… the cost of care, support and helping people must be a priority  




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