As part of the medical team within our sports team we are responsible for not only treating injuries in our players when they occur but also doing our best to prevent those injuries from occurring in the first place. It is common sense to think that our head coach will be happier to choose from a fully available squad and therefore utilise that squad to the benefit of the team suggesting squad availability benefits success on the pitch.

 But has that ever been proved in our modern day scientific medical world?

 The answer is yes. Jan Ekstrand (@JanEkstrand) and the UEFA Study group have shown that a lower injury incidence, lower injury burden and higher match availability were associated with increased points per league match over their 11-year study. ¹ So the time invested in injury prevention is not wasted. Appropriate warm up and injury prevention techniques, including the FIFA 11+ in football, have been shown to be effective in a large systematic review by Al Attar et al.  ²  Most of this work has been performed in youth, amateur andwomen’s soccer. However, we @uksportsmedicine performed a study in professionals along with Wolverhampton Wanderers FC that was the first to also demonstrate the benefits of the 11+ in professional footballers. You can see this on our website. ³  In addition, Benno Ejnisman, a friend ofUK Sports Medicine and liaison to Brazilian Soccer hasrecently published a Shoulder and Elbow 11+ to help injury  prevention in the upper limb. ⁴ Our feeling is that this should not be exclusive to Goalkeepers in Football but could benefit sportsmen and women in all sports where there is an increased possibility of Upper Limb injury.


   ¹ Injuries affect team performance negatively in professional football: an 11-year follow-up of the UEFA Champions League injury study.

  Hägglund M, Waldén M, Magnusson H, Kristenson K, BengtssonH, Ekstrand J.

  Br J Sports Med. 2013


 ² - How Effective are F-MARC Injury Prevention Programs for Soccer Players? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

  Al Attar WS, Soomro

 N, Pappas E, Sinclair PJ, Sanders RH

 Sports Med. 2016 Feb;46(2):205-17.

  ³ - Frequency of foot and ankle injuries in professional footballers following the introduction of Prehab that incorporates elements of the FIFA 11+ 

 NPM Jain, DJ Murray, P Hayward, S Kemp > Available at

 - Shoulder injuries in soccer goalkeepers: review and development of a FIFA 11+ shoulder injury prevention program.

 > Ejnisman B, Barbosa G, Andreoli CV, de Castro Pochini A, Lobo T, Zogaib R, Cohen M, Bizzini M, Dvorak J.

 > Open Access J Sports Med.

 2016 Aug 8;7:75-80.