‘Stop hugging’: Premier League players told as COVID-19 concerns mount

Outbreaks at Premier League groups, forcing the postponement of matches, have heightened concerns in regards to the avoidable and really seen shut contact between players.

The British authorities is more and more troubled by soccer players hugging and kissing in celebrations, risking coronavirus infections and the game’s capability to be allowed to proceed through the newest lockdown.

Outbreaks at Premier League groups, forcing the postponement of matches, have heightened concerns in regards to the avoidable and really seen shut contact between players.

“Everybody within the nation has needed to change the way in which they work together with folks and methods of working,” Sports activities Minister Nigel Huddleston tweeted on Wednesday. “Footballers aren’t any exception. COVID safe pointers exist for soccer. Footballers should comply with them and soccer authorities implement them — strictly.”

Amid a surge in COVID-19 circumstances, the Premier League has warned golf equipment that punishments will probably be handed out for flouting the foundations.

Mr. Huddleston linked on Twitter to a information story in regards to the league’s letter to golf equipment which specified players ought to keep away from handshakes, high-fives and hugs and that they had been “lucky to have the ability to proceed to play.”

That warning was not adhered to when players from Sheffield United and Manchester United embraced whereas celebrating scoring of their victories on Tuesday.

And nothing actually modified on Wednesday — regardless of the federal government’s renewed pleas earlier within the day.

Nearly all of Manchester Metropolis’s outfield players congratulated Phil Foden on his aim that earned a 1-0 win over Brighton, and it led to a big group hug.

“It’s intuition and response. It’s tough,” Metropolis supervisor Pep Guardiola stated.

In a 1-1 draw between Tottenham and Fulham, celebrations after Harry Kane’s aim for Tottenham had been pretty subdued, although Son Heung-min, Moussa Sissoko, Sergio Reguilon, Harry Winks and Tanguy Ndombele all went as much as congratulate him with fist bumps and excessive fives. Nonetheless, Fulham’s late equalizer sparked a lot of very shut hugging.

The league configured protocols for the return of video games in March at the side of Jonathan Van-Tam, the deputy chief medical officer for England, who additionally urged players to keep away from hugging and kissing on Wednesday.

“We’re in a really harmful place now,” Van-Tam stated on LBC radio whereas discussing the difficulty. “Each shut human contact, that’s avoidable, needs to be prevented as a result of one in three of us will get the an infection and don’t have any signs in any respect.”

A extra contagious variant of COVID-19 is sweeping throughout Britain the place there have been greater than 83,000 deaths from the illness. Britain reported 1,243 deaths on Tuesday, its second-highest variety of each day fatalities because the begin of the pandemic final yr.

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