Tottenham 0-1 Ajax: Medical staff followed protocol on head injury – Mauricio Pochettino

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Jan Vertonghen was helped off the pitch by medical staff after appearing to lose his balance on returning to the action

Tottenham’s medical staff followed the correct protocols before allowing Jan Vertonghen back on the pitch after his head injury, says Mauricio Pochettino.

Vertonghen collided with team-mate Toby Alderweireld and Ajax’s Andre Onana during the Champions League semi-final.

He was treated for five minutes on the pitch and attempted to continue playing but was eventually helped off by medical staff after appearing unwell.

“Of course I was worried, it’s normal,” said Spurs boss Pochettino.

“For me the most important thing is the health of the player,” he added. “In that moment the doctor decides it’s OK. The medical staff are the boss on the decision.”

Referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz had asked for confirmation to allow Vertonghen to return to the pitch but the centre-back was hunched over as he swiftly signalled that he would be unable to continue playing.

No ambulances were called to the stadium and Vertonghen was later seen walking freely through the media zone after the match.

“I wasn’t involved. It was the doctor’s decision,” said Pochettino. “The rules and the protocols are there. Our medical staff followed the protocol.

“He’s OK. We hope it is not a big issue. He walked away from the stadium. We know we have to keep watching and monitoring him because it was a big knock.”

What are Uefa’s protocols?

Referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz sought confirmation from Tottenham’s medical staff before letting Jan Vertonghen return to the pitch

According to Uefa’s concussion protocol,