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Ryan Mason forced to retire from football after head injury

The Guardian logo The Guardian 13/2/2018 Guardian sport
Ryan Mason in action for Hull City last year. © PA Ryan Mason in action for Hull City last year.

The Hull City midfielder Ryan Mason has been forced to retire from football, taking medical advice following a head injury suffered during the Premier League match at Chelsea in January 2017.

Mason suffered a fractured skull in a horrific clash of heads with Gary Cahill during his team’s loss and received treatment for around nine minutes on the Stamford Bridge pitch. He had surgery at St Mary’s Hospital in London and was released eight days later.

On Tuesday, Mason confirmed the news of his retirement. “I have worked tirelessly in order to be able to return to the pitch,” he said. “Unfortunately, having taken expert medical advice, I now have no option but to retire due to the risks involved given the nature of my injury.

Related: Hull’s Ryan Mason in stable condition after fracturing skull at Chelsea

“I am and always will be eternally grateful for the incredible network of people around me who have helped me to recover from what was a life-threatening injury in January 2017. That you to my amazing fiancé, Rachel, who has been my by side and lived every single day with me since the injury, helping to give me the strength I’ve needed no mater how tough things got. We are so lucky to have now become the parents of our perfect baby boy George.

“To my mum, dad, sisters, and all of my family and close friends, thank you for everything. Despite how tough it’s been and the challenges I’ve faced along the way you’ve all been there supporting me and words will never truly do justice to how grateful I am for your love and support.”

Hull City added: “Ryan has sought the guidance of numerous world-renowned neurologists and neurosurgeons who have all advised that a return to competitive football is not advised.”

Mason, who began his career at Tottenham, had loan spells with Yeovil, Doncaster, Millwall and Swindon before joining Hull in a £12m move in 2016. He was capped once by England, against Italy in March 2015.

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