‘Having headed a lot of footballs, I do have concerns’: England boss Gareth Southgate reveals he is worried his 20-year playing career may see him succumb to dementia in later life
- Gareth Southgate addressed the topic of dementia at his latest press conference
- The England manager said that he does hold concerns it may affect him directly
- Southgate enjoyed a 20-year playing career and he ‘headed a lot of footballs’
- England’s 1966 hero Sir Bobby Charlton was recently diagnosed with dementia
Gareth Southgate has admitted he worries that one day he may succumb to dementia as a result of his 20-year career as a footballer.
England’s head coach is fully supportive of the research that continues to be done to determine whether there is a link between the disease and the impact of repeatedly heading balls — and he is eager to see if there are conclusive results.
Southgate said: ‘At my age (50), having headed a lot of footballs, I do have concerns. But I also recognised when I took the field I was taking the risk of injury, short or long term.
Gareth Southgate has revealed that he does hold concerns he may succumb to dementia
Southgate said he had concerns after heading a lot of footballs during his playing career
‘I always wanted to have the career, even if it meant longer-term there might be physical or health issues for myself.
‘In terms of the link, there is research going on. That’s a little bit inconclusive at the moment, which is frustrating for everybody because we’d love to have a clear solution.
‘It’s a concern for everybody and we have to keep supporting that research.
‘Unfortunately we don’t have all the answers we’d like at the moment. I know some of that work is going on in the background.
‘I’ve had people in my own family who have suffered with dementia and it’s a terrible, terrible illness.’
Former Man Untied forward Sir Bobby Charlton was diagnosed with dementia this month
Charlton (left)’s diagnosis came just days after team-mate Nobby Stiles passed away aged 78
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