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How Fabian Schar may have returned to Newcastle training but controversy over head injury rages on; Newcastle United defender Fabian Schar was knocked out cold while playing for Switzerland earlier this month, yet they allowed him to continue.

Byline: Chris Waugh

FIFA's most senior medical official has criticised Switzerland's failure to remove Fabian Schar from the field after the Newcastle United defender was knocked out during a match.

The 27-year-old centre-backlost consciousness while playing for Switzerland last weekend after suffering a head-on-head collision with Georgia's Jemal Tabidze.

Schar was out cold for four minutes and, during that time, Georgia's Jano Ananidze inserted his fingers into the defender's mouth to ensure he did not swallow his own tongue.

Alan Shearer labels Fabian Schar incident 'nonsensical', & calls for independent doctors in football

The situation horrified brain-injury charity Headway, whodemanded that UEFA launch an investigationinto why "their [own] protocols were not followed".

Newcastle's all-time record goal-scorerAlan Sheareralsojoined the calls for independent medical professionalsto determine whether a player should be permitted to continue.

Now, Dr Michel d'Hooghe - who is a member of the FIFA Council and is the world governing body's medical committee chairman - has censured the Swiss national team, as well as UEFA, for the failure to adequately protect Schar.

After the game, theNewcastledefender admitted that he could not recall the incident - and that his skull was still "humming" as a result of the collision.

"When a player is unconscious he should immediately be removed from the pitch and should not return," D'Hooghe said of the Schar incident.

"This is very clear. This is the advice from all eminent neurologists. I am totally against what seems to have happened in this case.

"If the player says he can't remember anything about it, that's already an argument not to allow him to continue. But, of course, this was not a FIFA competition, [it was a UEFA competition].

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"I cannot judge if the team doctor was right or wrong because I wasn't there. But you should never underestimate concussion. You have to be very, very, very careful."

Schar has returned to light training at Newcastle's Benton Training Centre, but he will still miss the Magpies' trip to theEmirates, where they take on Arsenal on Monday night.

Regardless of whether the Swiss defender had been deemed fit to resume competitive action by then, he is ineligible as he is set to serve the second game of a two-match suspension after collecting 10 domestic yellow cards.

'Allowing Fabian Schar to play on was dangerous': Charity calls for investigation into head injury

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Newcastle United defender Fabian Schar was knocked out while playing for Switzerland earlier this month

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Chronicle (Newscastle upon Tyne, England)
Date:Mar 31, 2019
Words:430
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