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Premier League and players’ union launch dementia fund

The head of England’s Professional Footballers’ Association said caring for players suffering from dementia must become a “football-wide responsibility” at the launch of a new fund designed to help those affected.

There will be an initial £1 million ($1.26 million) available in a fund set up jointly by the PFA and the Premier League.

“This is an important step forward in the way football provides practical support to former players who develop dementia and other neurodegenerative conditions,” said PFA chief executive Maheta Molango.

“It’s an issue where, in all areas, we continue to believe there needs to be a football-wide responsibility.

“That includes providing access to financial support for former players and the families who most need it.”

The fund has been inspired by the work of several campaigners, including Dawn Astle.

Her father Jeff Astle, a former West Brom and England forward, died in 2002 aged 59 with early-onset dementia.

A coroner recorded the cause of death as industrial disease, owing to Astle’s repeated heading of a ball.

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