Ryan Giggs and Daniel James criticised by Headway for head injury 'acting' in Wales draw
Giggs on James: "He stayed down and was a bit streetwise. He told the doctors 'I'm not moving, I'm just sitting still'. Not to get anyone sent off, he was just using his nous."
By Liam Grace
Last Updated: 14/10/19 6:42pm
Ryan Giggs and Daniel James have come under fierce criticism from brain injury charity Headway after the Wales boss labelled the Manchester United winger "streetwise" for staying down when he was clattered by Domagoj Vida in the draw with Croatia.
James received lengthy treatment from medics on the pitch after the 15th-minute incident. The 21-year-old stayed on the pitch and passed concussion protocols, which took place at half-time.
Former Tottenham defender Ryan Mason, who retired early in his career with a head injury, appeared to be critical of how the situation was handled on social media. Giggs insisted James "was just using his nous", but his remarks have now been condemned by Headway, who criticised the duo.
Daniel James was just knocked out unconscious! Yet 3 minutes later he has been allowed back onto the pitch 🤷♂️— Ryan Mason (@RyanMason) October 13, 2019
Giggs said: "The physio came over but there was no problem. We did all the (concussion) tests at half-time and he was fine.
"He stayed down and was a bit streetwise. He told the doctors 'I'm not moving, I'm just sitting still'. Not to get anyone sent off, he was just using his nous."
James added: "I think he just caught me in the head. I didn't get knocked out, fortunately."
In response to their comments, Headway chief executive Peter McCabe said: "Although it is argued that concussion protocols were followed, the rules state that if a concussion is suspected a player must be removed from the game.
"To all watching, it appeared that Daniel James lost consciousness. Regardless of his manager's comments after the game, this in itself must surely have given enough reason to take a cautious approach.
"However, Ryan Giggs' claim that the player was being 'streetwise' by staying down and appearing to have been knocked out is shocking.
"If that is the case and James was 'acting', it raises serious questions about the player's understanding of the seriousness of concussion.
"Not only has he put his own medical team under intense and unfair scrutiny, but he's also set a dangerous example for the millions watching at home.
"Similarly, we have serious concerns about terms like 'streetwise' or that the player was 'just using his nous'. It is simply not acceptable for teams to use concussion protocols for tactical gain."
'He was the filling in a Croatian sandwich'
Sky Sports News reporter Geraint Hughes in Cardiff...
"He probably wasn't unconscious and there are a few reasons why we know that. He was allowed to continue and the speed that, not just the Wales medical team, but also the paramedics just next to the dugout came onto the pitch and began to treat James was lightning quick, it was just seconds.
"They didn't wait for the referee, they were on because the initial challenge was terrible. Commentator Bill Leslie said he was 'pole axed' and he was the filling in a Croatian sandwich.
"In terms of what exactly happened thereafter, was James seriously hurt or was it a bit of 'streetwise' thinking? You've initially got to look from the medical point of view. The initial challenge didn't look good and on the pitch, they are in charge.
"They initially would have told James what they wanted him to do, it's not up to him if he gets up or not and the medical staff would have wanted to go through those protocols and make sure he was fine.
"He was, in the end, absolutely OK but once the medical staff and paramedics are on the pitch, they are in charge and they have to make sure that any injury is not serious. Fortunately, from that point of view, it wasn't."
Will James feature for Manchester United against Liverpool on Super Sunday? Watch the clash from 3pm on Sky Sports Premier League and Main Event; Kick-off 4.30pm.