Written by 00:08 Sports

What is the pink card needed for? The great novelty of the Copa America 2024

CONMEBOL confirmed that the pink card will be used for the first time at the Copa Amrica 2024 to be played this June in the United States.

The pink card will be used to warn, in a purely administrative manner, in the event of a suspected head injury or concussion.

In other words, when a concussion is confirmed, the pink card will be handed to the fourth official by a member of the affected player’s coaching staff. He will do so to specify that it is a change due to concussion. In no case shall the pink card be used by the head referee or the fourth official to show it in front of the public.

“When the substitution for concussion is used, the opposing team will automatically have the possibility of making an additional substitution,” shared the Competitions and Operations management of CONMEBOL (South American Football Confederation) to explain what would be a sixth change to take care of the health of the players, something, by the way, that already existed in the rules of soccer. In fact, it happened in the last World Cup final with France.

The protocol states that “if a regular substitution is made at the same time as a concussion substitution, one substitution opportunity will be deducted. When a team has used all regular substitution opportunities, it may not use a concussion substitution to make a regular substitution.” Hence, this pink card distinction.

When can the pink card be used? This is Article 96

Article 96 – Substitution upon suspicion of cranioencephalic trauma and concussion.

I. Up to 1 (one) substitution per team per match may be made in the event of suspected head injury and concussion, independently of the 5 (five) substitutions mentioned in the preceding article of these Regulations (in case of extra time, six substitutions). The substitution due to concussion may be carried out regardless of the number of substitutions made up to the moment it occurs.

II. If the team decides to carry out the substitution for concussion, the head referee or the fourth official shall be informed. For this substitution, a pink card, different from the other substitution cards, shall be used.

III. However, if a regular substitution is made at the same time as a concussion substitution, one substitution opportunity shall be deducted. When a team has used all regular substitution opportunities, it may not use a concussion substitution to make a regular substitution.

IV. When the concussion substitution is used, the opposing team shall automatically be given the opportunity to make an additional substitution. The head referee or the fourth official shall inform the opposing team that, from that moment on, it has the option of using an additional substitute and an additional substitution opportunity, which may be made simultaneously with or after the concussion substitution made by the opposing team. This additional opportunity may only be used for an additional substitution, not for regular substitutions.

V. A player who suffers a concussion or is suspected of having suffered a concussion may not rejoin the match or participate in the penalty shootout and, whenever possible, shall be escorted to the locker room or a medical facility.

VI. Once the match is over (within 24 hours after the end of the match), the doctor of the team that has detected this suspicion on the field of play and has or has not substituted the player, must send the completed and signed SCAT5 form (standardized tool to evaluate concussions) to the CONMEBOL medical committee.


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Last modified: 10 June 2024
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