Home Sports Football Dr. Zafar Iqbal – Arsenal’s new Head of Sports Medicines

Dr. Zafar Iqbal – Arsenal’s new Head of Sports Medicines

Dr. Zafar Iqbal – Arsenal’s new Head of Sports Medicines

Dr. Zafar Iqbal played a significant role in the Premier League’s decision to pause a match during Ramadan in 2021, allowing players to break their fast. This decision was made for the first time in league history, and Dr. Iqbal was the driving force behind it. He is a highly experienced and technically skilled medical professional, and his expertise will be invaluable to Arsenal as they look to strengthen their medical team following Gary O’Driscoll’s departure from the Emirates Stadium. Dr. Iqbal’s experience in football goes beyond just the medical side, as he also has playing experience. Arsenal fans are eagerly anticipating the positive impact that Dr. Iqbal will make at the London Colney.

How did Dr. Zafar Iqbal chose this profession?

Dr Zafar Iqbal has been a doctor since 1999 and started specialising in Sports Medicine in 2004, following a knee injury that he picked up while playing football. In a recent interview with TalkSport, Zafar mentioned that the care that he received during the treatment was quite poor which directed him to learning more about Sports Medicine and help himself through the recovery and also people like him.

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Background to Arsenal signing Dr. Zafar Iqbal:

Iqbal is replacing Arsenal’s former Head of Sports Medicine Gary O’Driscoll who served the club for almost 15 years. Last September, he made a move to Manchester United.

Florence Newton had taken O’Discroll’s old job on interim basis and was supported by academy doctor Ges Steinbergs before Iqbal’s arrival.

Back in December, through David Ornstein, he conveyed the news of Arsenal signing Zafar Iqbal. He was initially expected to make the switch at the end of the season after serving a notice period.

However, he joined the staff early during Arsenal 6-0 victory against Sheffield United where he was glimpsed giving a helping hand to Gabriel Martinelli near the touch line.

Dr. Zafar Iqbal’s experience in the medical realm:

Iqbal has previously had stints at Leyton Orient (2005-2007), Tottenham Hotspur (2007-2010) and also Liverpool (2010-2015) from where he moved to Crystal Palace for more than 8 years.

Iqbal has also served as the chair of the Premier League Doctor’s Group and the co-chairman of the FA Medical Society. He has also had significant spells as an elite practitioner not only in the footballing realm but also for Kent County Cricket Club and Pakistan Cricket Board.

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How can he help Arsenal with his expertise in the field?

No doubt that the former Eagles man brings in a high level of expertise and experience to Arsenal’s plate. His signature can make significant impact; starting from this season itself as they look to make the most of the availability of the squad during the final months of a huge title race.

Arsenal have had an injury crisis from early on this season. Some of the players who’ve missed extended periods out are namely; Jurrien Timber, Thomas Partey, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko. To play matches at the highest level week in week out, the availability of the squad is of utmost priority for Arsenal whilst competing strongly in the Premier League and Champions League.

Arsenal have had several players pick out recurring knocks throughout their time at Arsenal, particularly Thomas Partey and Gabriel Jesus. While it is about cure, it is also about prevention, and Dr. Zafar Iqbal will need to ensure that the club are preparing the players to the best of their physical output and drawing lines to contain their injuries. We have seen the best football team’s that have defined eras have always had their priorities at prevention, and that is something Arsenal and Mikel Arteta would be looking towards as well.

Also read: Arsenal Will Host Chelsea In A Crucial Midweek Clash As The Gunners Aim To Extend Their Lead At The Top Of The Table

Iqbal’s arrival could make a key difference albeit it is a bit too much to ask for in such a short span of time of his signing.



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