It shouldn’t have been a surprise, but it was. Audiences at least year’s Women’s World Cup semifinals were paralyzed in shock as they watched medics rush to the rescue of Morgan Brian and Alexandra Popp. The two opposing players illustrated, in real time, the dangers of soccer head trauma.
Just seconds before, Germany’s women’s team had a free kick. Morgan Brian, a defender for the United States, jumped up to “head” the ball. Unfortunately, Alexandra Popp made the same move, only a split-second later. As the ball bounced effortlessly off Brian’s forehead, her skull descended backward, and cracked unexpectedly against Popp’s forehead. The force couldn’t have been any greater if they had actually been trying to assault one another.