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Ryan Mason tells Raul Jimenez to priortise health over football return and calls for head injury rule change

·2-min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Tottenham head coach Ryan Mason has urged Raul Jimenez to prioritise his health over a quick return to action and called for a rule change to prevent the kind of injuries suffered by himself and the Wolves forward.

Mason was forced to retire as a player in February 2018 after suffering a horrific skull fracture following a clash of heads while playing for Hull City against Chelsea in 2017.

Jimenez has returned to training after suffering a similar injury when Arsenal's David Luiz collided with the back of his head at the Emirates Stadium in November.

The Mexican, whose Wolves side visit Mason's Spurs on Sunday, is set to see a specialist on May 18 to determine whether he can return to action before the end of the season.

"I hope he is okay, I really do," Mason told a pre-match press conference. "I know the emotions and feelings he is going through at the moment with him and his family. The most important thing and the only advice I would give is that your health is the most important thing in this situation.

"To back that up, I would go down a different route in terms of the bigger picture and say maybe more needs to be done with these types of challenges and the perception of these types of challenges.

“I said it for a few years now after my incident. I didn’t like to see that nothing has really changed and Raul’s as well, the same thing, a same late challenge from behind and the perception hasn’t changed.

"Maybe within the rules something needs to be changed. I don’t know [what exactly] but from a technical point of view a late challenge from behind with excessive force ticks all the boxes to be a bad challenge, but for some reason with head challenges and injuries, this isn’t the case.

“Hopefully going forward this will change. I am optimistic that the Premier League and the PGMOL are listening and it’s a matter of time. Hopefully that will change.

"I hope he is okay and returns to play, I really do, but the most important thing for any player is your health. He has a family too so hopefully the conversations he has and the scans he has produce positive results and he can return to the football pitch."

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