Japan Football League general secretary Keizo Kato said Thursday he will remind JFL clubs to implement stricter measures in order to avoid a reoccurrence of the untimely and tragic death at 34 of former Japan defender Naoki Matsuda following a heart attack.
The third-tier JFL had told all clubs to have prepared automatic external defibrillators (AED), portable electronic devices that automatically diagnose the potentially life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias that lead to cardiac arrest.
Matsuda lost his fight for life on Thursday, two days after he collapsed during practice with JFL team Matsumoto Yamaga, who did not have an AED at their training facility.
“I’ll be reminding all the clubs. The lack of thoroughness points to poor management,” said Kato.
The men’s professional J. League in 2003 told all first and second-division clubs to always have AEDs on standby.
The women’s league has left it up to each club to use its own judgment, but the league’s secretary Yoshinori Taguchi said, “This is something that has to be taken into consideration. I’m sure it will come up in an executive committee meeting in September.”
Japan Football Association vice president Kozo Tashima said, “The JFA’s medical committee has to come up with measures to ensure this kind of thing never happens again.”