Coronavirus sports news: Spitting could be banned in future football games
According to scientific experts, coronavirus could be spread from player to player if spitting was allowed to continue as normal, especially given players could be asymptomatic whilst competing. In future, players may be punished with a yellow card for spitting.
FIFA's Medical Committee Chairman Michel D'Hooghe has said that football players will have to change their mannerisms on the pitch for health and safety reasons once the game returns to action after the coronavirus pandemic. Spitting may be punishable by a yellow card and banned outright, as saliva which stays on the pitch for hours risks spreading COVID-19.
“This is a common practice in football and it is not very hygienic,” D'Hooge told The Telegraph newspaper. His comments come as football in England nears a return with Premier League clubs slowly returning to training.
“So when we start football again I think we should have to avoid that at maximum. The question is whether that will be possible. Perhaps they can give a yellow card.
“It is unhygienic and a good way to spread the virus. This is one of the reasons why we have to be very careful before we start again. I am not pessimistic but I am rather sceptical at the moment.”
According to scientific experts, coronavirus could be spread from player to player if spitting was allowed to continue as normal, especially given players could be asymptomatic whilst competing.
“If the person is infected but asymptomatic, or infected and symptomatic, the virus is present in the throat, and can be ejected into the environment by spitting,” said Dr Ian Brierley, virologist at the University of Cambridge.
“Players may have to develop new celebrations so that they are not in close contact with each other. Pre-match handshakes, huddles at the start of a game and shirt swapping at the end of the match would also send out a poor message.”
Not just in the game of football, similar calls are being made in the world of cricket as bowlers often use their saliva on the ball to help it swing. But this action, according to the Daily Mail, is also facing a ban if the sport returns in the near-future.