Athens medical symposium

The UEFA Medical Symposium, held every four years, will take place in Athens from 30 January to 1 February.

UEFA Medical Symposium in 2014
UEFA Medical Symposium in 2014 ©Sportsfile

UEFA's commitment to the further development of football's medical sector will come under the spotlight at the 7th UEFA Medical Symposium, which takes place in Athens, Greece, from 30 January to 1 February.

The main theme of the 2018 symposium is "The Importance of Medicine in Football". Football doctors, physiotherapists and medical staff are playing a central role in protecting the players, maximising team performance and keeping our sport clean.

Doctors from all 55 UEFA member national associations and a number of European clubs have been invited to attend. In total there will be around 200 participants. The event is being organised by the UEFA medical and anti-doping unit with the support of the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO). Preparations for the Symposium are in their final phase to ensure that the seventh symposium enjoys similar success to previous gatherings in Frankfurt (1993), Coverciano/Florence (1997), Nyon (2002), Istanbul (2006), Stockholm (2010) and Madrid (2014).

The agenda will cover all aspects of the role of medicine in the modern game. Delegates will be offered the opportunity to hear from expert speakers on a wide variety of areas of football medicine. Talks at the symposium will look at the latest developments in areas such as nutrition, player well-being, emergency medicine, concussion, injury rehabilitation and anti-doping requirements – while research from the UEFA Elite Club Injury Study (ECIS) will be key to many sessions.

A round-table discussion on the importance of medicine in football will include prominent speakers, such as Louis van Gaal, Edwin Goedhart (KVNB), Gijs de Jong (KNVB), Jan Ekstrand (ECIS), Dave Reddin (The FA) and Darcy Norman (AS Roma).

The Symposium aims to promote the work of the European football medical community, which has already been brought together in recent years through programmes such as the UEFA Football Doctor Education Programme and the Elite Club Injury Study. On 1 January 2018, the latest version of UEFA's medical regulations came into force, which include revised pre-competition medical examinations and minimum medical requirements for UEFA competitions.