Holding a COVID passport (proof of having had two doses of the COVID vaccine) is set to be made mandatory at sports events and nightclubs in the UK from October 1st, something which has divided opinion.
“Proof of a negative test will no longer be enough”
UK PM Boris Johnson says that after all over-18s have had the chance to get both Covid jabs, full vaccination will be required for entry into “nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather”https://t.co/EZJkjkCXF1 pic.twitter.com/q0UpIP3Hmr
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) July 19, 2021
However, according to a report in the Daily Mail, Premier League players will have the same requirements before being able to represent their clubs.
Previously, regular negative testing, for the most part, had been enough to keep the virus out of elite sportspeople’s bubbles, since the Premier League restarted in June 2020. However, this will no longer be enough, with the UK Government stepping up their vaccine roll out and now targetting the top division of English football.
This comes after both Arsenal and Aston Villa have had their pre-season efforts affected by COVID-19, while Manchester City called off their friendly against AS Troyes due to UK quarantine rules for those returning from France.
Aston Villa can confirm that Head Coach Dean Smith will not be present at tonight’s friendly with Walsall as he is currently isolating with his family.
Craig Shakespeare will take charge of the team this evening. pic.twitter.com/sFi2eQzxqb
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) July 21, 2021
With full capacity crowds returning to stadiums, the chances of Premier League stars catching COVID will increase, and clubs chasing the financial boon stemming from increased ticket sales are likely to be supportive of the measure.
Football fans attending stadiums in England after July 19 will require a COVID passport and will be told to wear masks.https://t.co/60J7XGVMyY
— SPORTbible (@sportbible) July 14, 2021
However, the Mail reports that this is not the same across playing staffs:
“youngsters at numerous clubs [are] understood to have reservations about being jabbed.”
How this tug of war over vaccination plays out remains to be seen.
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This article was edited by Conor Laird.