The PFA creates brain disease care department for former players in victory for Sportsmail campaign

The PFA creates brain disease care department for former players in major victory for Sportsmail campaign… but the move is considered ‘satisficing’ by Nobby Stiles’ son, who describes it as ‘another load of bluster’

  • The PFA have announced a care department for neurodegenerative diseases
  • The new move will see former players get dedicated support over dementia
  • Dawn Astle – the daughter of ex-West Brom striker Jeff – will lead the project
  • But Nobby Stiles’ son claims the department does not change anything at all 











The PFA have announced the creation of a dedicated former player care department for neurodegenerative diseases.

It represents another victory for Sportsmail’s campaign, but the move has been branded ‘satisficing’ by John Stiles, son of World Cup winner Nobby.

Dawn Astle, daughter of West Brom and England striker Jeff — who died in 2002 after suffering with Alzheimer’s disease — will formally join the union as project lead. A head of former player care and two family support advisers will also be brought on board.

Steps to create such a department were revealed 12 months ago and the move addresses one of the seven points in this newspaper’s campaign for football to tackle its dementia crisis.

But there was nothing in a statement released by the PFA on Wednesday night on whether they would now offer help for ex-players who are in care homes.

The PFA have announced the creation of a dedicated former player care department for neurodegenerative diseases

But the department was branded as ¿satisficing¿ by John Stiles, son of the late Nobby Stiles

But the department was branded as ‘satisficing’ by John Stiles, son of the late Nobby Stiles

On Tuesday, we reported that Blackburn Rovers fans had launched a crowd-funding page for former player and coach Tony Parkes.

Natalie Parkes-Thompson, the 72-year-old’s daughter, said she hit a ‘barrier’ with the union as soon as he went into a nursing home, with help drying up.

‘There is no change,’ said Stiles, whose father passed away in 2020 after suffering from dementia. ‘It’s the usual satisficing, doing something to take the pressure off. Tony Parkes and the likes still won’t get any help. It looks like another load of bluster.’

Dawn Astle (above), daughter of West Brom and England striker Jeff, will lead the project

Dawn Astle (above), daughter of West Brom and England striker Jeff, will lead the project 

Chris Sutton, whose father Mike died in 2020 after being diagnosed with the illness, agreed. ‘The PFA charity have £62million in the bank,’ he said. ‘They don’t even know how many ex-players are in care homes. It’s utterly ridiculous.

‘Tony Parkes will have paid his subs every year — what are you actually paying for? To be left on your own later in life? This is just a defence mechanism.’

PFA chief executive Maheta Molango said the creation of the department was a ‘hugely important’ development.

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