Senegal have been accused of risking Sadio Mane's health after the Liverpool star continued playing despite being involved in an intense head collision in their Africa Cup of Nations clash on Tuesday.
During the Lions of Teranga's 2-0 round of 16 win over Cape Verde, the winger appeared to be knocked out momentarily following a dangerous collision with opposition goalkeeper Vozinha. He then received treatment as the shot-stopper was shown a red card.
Scroll through the gallery above to see the aftermath of the nasty head collision
With Mane continuing to play, he scored the opening goal of the encounter a few minutes after the incident, but later collapsed to the pitch holding his head, before being substituted.
This has led many to question why he was still on the field at the time, with FIFA's concussion protocol stating that a player who lies motionless for more than five seconds or drops unconscious should be taken off immediately, according to the Daily Mirror.
With many concerned for his wellbeing, after the match Mane posted a picture on social media of himself alongside Vozinha giving the thumbs-up, with the caption: "All is well, thank you for all of the messages."
Despite the star appearing to be unscathed by the collision, Luke Griggs, deputy chief executive of a brain injury association called Headway, has criticised the way Senegal handled the situation and claimed they put the player at risk.
"On the face of it, this seems to be yet another example of football putting results ahead of player safety," he said, per the Daily Mail.
"This was a sickening collision that clearly left both players in enough distress for a concussion to have surely been considered a possibility at the very least.
"At that point, the principle of 'if in doubt, sit it out' should have resulted in Mane being substituted without another ball being kicked.
"The image of the player collapsing on the ground and having to be helped from the pitch after scoring his goal should tell you everything you need to know about the impact and the effect it had had on his brain.
"Yet again, the desire to win is seen as being worth serious risks to players' health. It is simply shocking that this continues to happen.
"This is now a real test of leadership for the Confederation of African Football and world governing body FIFA – particularly if Senegal declare Mane fit for Sunday's quarter-final.
"If football wants to be taken seriously when it comes to concussion, it simply must take action to enforce and strengthen its protocols."
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