After yesterday’s Huddle Up, I am sure some people are asking “should young kids play football?” I don’t think anyone who really has studied this has recommended the banning of youth football. What has happened (and this is really the good thing) is we now have coaching rules that make sure youth coaches teach proper techniques at all levels. Almost all of our youth coaches now are well instructed in the art of tackling and protecting the head. Also, much medical study has gone into the perfecting of helmets worn by young football players. We no longer bring out a box of old helmets, stick them on a kid’s head, and say “you are ready to play football”.If you are a parent wondering whether to let your son play football, keep good track of how he is being coached; and if he is injured, forget about the old macho sayings of “shake it off–you’re not hurt” or just “be tough”. When you get hurt in the head, it isn’t a matter of whether you are tough or not. It is a matter of how severe was the injury. The next step is to listen to the doctor. When they say the young athlete can play, then you let them go back to playing but not before. In most states, this is now the rule. Only the doctor can clear you. In some cases one severe injury might be enough. There are other sports and other avenues to take.
Monk was vitriolic in his criticism of Riley after the defeat at Stoke on Sunday, claiming the head of Professional Game Match Officials Ltd (PGMOL) has been “very poor” in not responding to a list of what he felt were bad refereeing decisions he had sent him. The Swansea manager was speaking after blasting match official Michael Oliver for a “disgusting” decision in awarding a penalty for a foul on Stoke’s Victor Moses, which he claimed was a blatant dive. A Premier League spokesman said the package from Swansea had not landed on Riley’s desk until after the weekend. “The correspondence from Swansea was received by PGMOL on Monday morning and Mike will no doubt be speaking to Garry this week,” the spokesman told Press Association Sport. Football Association disciplinary officials are understood to be studying Monk’s comments about the referee to see if the Swansea manager should face any action. Monk had said about Riley: “I have sent a DVD off with a letter, expressing my disappointment and I’ve had no contact from Mike Riley. “I think it is about being pro-active and he is clearly not doing that – he is clearly not listening to anything I am saying. “(Riley’s) job is to ring me – it’s not mine to ring him. He is supposed to be the head of these guys and overseeing it all, and seeing what managers feel. “But I’ve had no contact whatsoever, and for me, that is very poor.” The Premier League says referees chief Mike Riley will contact Swansea manager Garry Monk this week but insist that a letter and DVD from the Welsh club only arrived at its offices earlier on Monday. Press Association