Questions Remain After Aurelien Collin Head Injury
(HARRISON,NJ) The New York Red Bulls result from the weekend over Montreal Impact was massive. The Impact and Red Bulls came into the contest tied on points, though New York was ahead in the standings by wins and goal differential. However, the Impact have two games in hand on the red team, and a loss at home could have been disaster heading into the stretch run with a number of players injured.The 3-1 win allowed NY to keep pace with Toronto and NYCFC for the top two spots. Sean Davis turned in another terrific performance, as did Bradley Wright-Phillips and Sacha Kljestan. All certainly seems rosey, but questions remain after Aurelien Collin subbed out after head injury
In the 56th minute, Collin and Kemar Lawrence challenged a ball in the air to Matteo Mancosu. The two Red Bull players clashed into each other and both went down. While initially it looked like Lawrence had taken the worst of it, Collin was clearly shaken up.
“… I asked him, he said he just couldn’t see.” – Denis Hamlett
The shot was to Collin’s temple, and he had trouble getting up afterward. When he finally did stand, he looked dazed. He was subbed off 4 minutes later after laying down, unable to continue. Denis Hamlett relayed after the game “I think when he came off, I asked him, he said he just couldn’t see.” The moderator of the press conference updated that “It’s not a concussion. He’s fine.”
The speed at which the diagnosis came back is not the only part that I find troubling about this situation. It is one we see quite a bit in professional sports. Why was Collin not taken off the field with Lawrence when the trainer came out? Collin may have refused treatment, but when it comes to head injuries, should the player be allowed to do so?
Whether or not Collin did suffer a concussion is irrelevant in the situation. The question remains as to why he was not evaluated further? Doing so would have left the Red Bulls a man down momentarily, as Montreal had already lost Ambroise Oyongo to a red card. Disadvantage or no, this seems a bit dangerous for the safety of the player.
In a situation like this, is it the coach or the referee’s responsibility to make sure the player goes through the proper steps to receive treatment? Questions like this still have a long way to go before they are answered.
Since the game there have been no further updates on Collin’s status ahead of this week’s CONCACAF Champions League match, a game he is likely to play a role in. If he did suffer from a concussion, he should not be playing in another match so soon after the injury.
I suffered a concussion just less than two years ago, when I was playing as a striker in an indoor league when I challenged the keeper (My best friend no less) for a ball in the air. I went over the top of him and landed directly on the back of my head. This part is all second hand information as I have no memory of even challenging for the ball. I remember shortly before the incident thinking I should sub off soon, then nothing.
Fragments of trying to walk down the sidelines after walking off and not being able to walk a straight line exist in my memory. The rest is gone. About 30 minutes later, I came around. I hadn’t been unconscious, and every few minutes I would ask what happened to me, but I don’t remember any of that. At the hospital that night, I received a CT scan. Luckily, there was no bleeding on the brain and I was allowed to sleep. Sleep did not come easy for me as my head continued to throb and ache.
For the next few weeks, the pain would come and go without warning. I still feel like I entered a different world after the injury. That isn’t quantifiable data, but there is no better way to describe it. I feel different. I have never expressed that, but it is true nonetheless. Is that true of others who have had concussions?
So when a player goes down after a head injury, I take a special interest. I hope that both Collin and Lawrence are okay. I hope that there is a point of equalization surrounding head injuries and the treatment athletes should receive following one. For now, the Red Bulls count themselves lucky the injury was not catastrophic and must actionize a plan to not let a player remain in a game under similar circumstances without being looked at.