Paul Dickov column: Protecting players is key to the new concussion rules

Nathan Tyson suffered a concussion at Fulham
Nathan Tyson suffered a concussion at Fulham

This week we have had the first real case of the new rules on concussions influencing our squad.

Nathan Tyson will miss Saturday’s trip to Walsall because he suffered a concussion late on in our game at Fulham on Tuesday night.

The new rules state that any player suffering a concussion cannot play for the next five or six days afterwards.

Should anything happen to a player in that situation if they did play, the club would be leaving itself wide open legally.

There has been plenty of debate over the new rulings but I must say that I am fully supportive of them.

There is no one who would like to see Nathan out there for us on Saturday but we abide by the rules.

I think it has to be the case because sometimes there can be a delayed reaction - not hours but days later. You have to take the players’ safety into consideration.

As much as a player may claim they’re ok, you have to abide by the rules because they just don’t really know.

I had a few in my career. I remember getting knocked out down at Queens Park Rangers once with 20 minutes to go and I stayed on the pitch.

I honestly can’t remember finishing the game. If you asked me whether I’d scored or not, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you.

It was scary travelling back and not being able to remember.

I remember watching the video of the game back and it was like I’d seen all that for the first time.

It shows that you have to take precautions because that could have been very dangerous.

And you can’t always take a player’s word that they’re ok or just their judgement. I was one of those players who would have wanted to play on with one leg.

I didn’t help myself sometimes. I broke my foot at Manchester City and played on for nine games.

You do something like that, don’t end up doing yourself justice because you’re not at 100 per cent and then I was out for ten weeks because I needed an operation.

Thankfully, Nathan seems to be ok. He just needs to settle it down over the next couple of days but it is looking positive for him at this stage.

It is a blow for us to be without him because Nathan has been fantastic.

But the safety of my players is paramount.