BarcelonaIago Aspas and Eric Garcia were the first to reach the corner kick, but Ronald Araujo was as fast as a snake, grabbing the ball from under his nose. It had been a few seconds since he had collided head-on with Gavi in the second half of Barça-Celta. Initially, it looked like the midfielder had received the worst of it, but it was the other way around. Iago and Eric realized that Araujo had lost consciousness and, in a reflexive act, set him aside. A gesture as instinctive as it is essential in situations of this style. Shortly afterwards, the medical services did the rest of the work.
It was just a scare. Araujo was leaving the field by ambulance, in an image that froze the little more than 50,000 people in the stadium. The club was quick to report that it was a concussion and that the footballer was conscious, but that he was being taken to hospital as a precaution. After spending the night under evaluation, he was discharged from hospital this Wednesday morning and was on his way home.
Eric and Aspas acted on their own. And they both did it more than well, they agree to say both from the club and from the medical side. Surely in the case of Eric because in his day he also suffered a similar situation. It was June 17, 2020, when he was still playing for Manchester City. In a duel against Arsenal, and in the final stretch of the match, Eric collides with goalkeeper Ederson and lies on the ground, unconscious. He ended up marching on a stretcher and with the help of oxygen, and later he would be a few games playing with a protective helmet. But the highlight of the action is what would happen next: Eric would receive a small lesson from the doctors of the blue-sky set, who tell him that in a case like this you have to stand aside, in a fetal position. This is technically called side safety position (PLS).
Barça players do not receive any first aid training
“They did a very good job. Basic, though. Because with this position the tongue can’t go back and block your breath, or, in case you vomit, swallow it,” explains Dr. Miquel Llobet. The prestigious traumatologist, with a Barça past, comments that thanks to the PLS “a very complex possible situation was avoided” for Araujo. “It’s a head injury with a non-immediate concussion, because the player can run a few meters,” said Dr. Pere Mir, a sports traumatologist at the Teknon Clinic, who also endorses the players’ gesture in rescuing his teammate. “When someone loses consciousness, they have to put themselves in that position because the tongue falls back and can obstruct the airways. It’s not that you swallow it, as they say, but it makes it harder for air “Once you regain consciousness, then you can put it upside down.”
“Eric’s reaction was spontaneous,” they point out from the Barça dressing room. And there was no action protocol planned by the club. “If the players do not receive any training on situations like this, what happened to Araujo is a good opportunity for them to do so,” added Dr. Llobet.
Araujo will return to training soon
The plant was discharged from the hospital after undergoing a CT scan at the hospital. From here it will be the turn of the doctors, who will follow your case and determine when you will be able to return to training. According to Dr. Mir, it should not be ruled out that Araujo will be subjected to additional tests this Thursday. In any case, he predicts that he will be able to join the group “soon”. In fact, Araujo is not ruled out of the dressing room to play in Getafe on Sunday. In the’staff they are clear that if he depends on them, he will take the plane with the rest of his teammates. “Let’s see what the doctors say.” They will have the last word.