Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) to introduce site inspections after the PFA Injury Report reveals 27 per cent rise in injuries.

General Manager Adam Vivian has announced the PFA will now advocate for site inspections amongst other measures in the wake of findings from the first 19 rounds of the 2013/2014 season.

These measures are likely to include:
·      training players in Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Law;
·      appointing OH&S experts at every club;
·      increased dialogue with Football Federation Australia (FFA) medical staff; and
·      utilising leading experts to examine injury rates, their nature and the recovery times associated with them.

Vivian said the spike comes as a surprise after the new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) standards saw a reduction in A-League injuries over the last two seasons.

“The PFA wishes to ensure that its members have access to a safe working environment and these findings raise questions as to whether the ‘Minimum Medical Standards’ are being complied with or are inadequate,”said Vivian.

“The PFA sees workplace inspections and additional measures as necessary due to increasing feedback from players expressing concern with the management of player health, safety and injury within the club environment.

“If games missed through injury carries on at the current rate it will exceed last seasons total by more than 25 per cent.

“The scale of the problem has been highlighted on several occasions throughout the season where we have seen clubs unable to call on 30 per cent of their playing squad due to injury.

“It has also become common place for some clubs to have on average 20 per cent of their playing squad unavailable each week.

“In a salary capped environment, where there are also restrictions on squad sizes, missing a considerable amount of your playing squad has a significant impact on clubs both economically and on their performances on the pitch.

To further strengthen the findings the validity of the PFA Injury Report was boosted with its recent submission as an abstract on ‘Time-loss injuries in the Australian A-League Professional Football from 2008 to 2013’ to the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport.

Authored by FIFPro’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Vincent Gouttebarge, the submission was co-authored by PFA General Manager, Adam Vivian and FIFPro Vice President, Brendan Schwab.

First 19 rounds of season 2013/2014




number of injuries number of games missed % of HAL Injuries % of HAL games missed average number of players unavailable each week
Adelaide United 17 55 14.5 11.5 2.9
Brisbane Roar 10 51 8.5 10.7 2.7
Central Coast Mariners 7 41 6 8.6 2.2
Melbourne Heart 10 55 8.5 11.5 2.9
Melbourne Victory 6 14 5.1 2.9 0.7
Newcastle Jets 12 45 10.3 9.4 2.4
Perth Glory 13 63 11.1 13.2 3.3
Sydney FC 19 92 16.2 19.3 4.8
Wellington Phoenix 9 28 7.7 5.9 1.5
Western Sydney Wanderers 14 34 12 7.1 1.8
Total 117 478 100 100 Avg: 2.5