Coronavirus: Premier League & EFL ditch pre-match fair-play handshakes

by

The Premier League and EFL have said pre-match handshakes between both teams and officials will not take place until further notice because of fears over the spread of coronavirus.

The measure comes the day after the government asked the Premier League “to step up its contingency planning”.

The teams will still line up as usual but the home team will walk past the away side without shaking hands.

There have been more than 90,000 cases of the virus in 87 countries.

 

A statement on the Premier League’s website said: “The Premier League fair-play handshake will not take place between players and match officials from this weekend until further notice based on medical advice.

“Coronavirus is spread via droplets from the nose and mouth and can be transmitted on to the hands and passed on via a handshake.”

A statement from the English Football League said: “Whilst the government guidance does remain unchanged, a decision has been taken on medical advice and as a precautionary measure.

“Matchday operations at EFL grounds are set to continue this weekend with clubs being advised to take appropriate prevention measures as per the government guidance.

“It is understood, however, that individual clubs may take decisions at a local level to help mitigate the risk of the virus spreading further ahead of this weekend’s matches.

“The EFL continues to remain in regular dialogue with the government regarding the ongoing developments and is being appraised on a regular basis of developments that could potentially impact our clubs and competitions.”

Pre-match handshakes before National League games have also been abandoned until further notice.

Premier League leaders Liverpool announced on Thursday that they would not be having mascots at Anfield.

They have also cancelled staff travelling to any high-risk countries and “reminded everyone of good hygiene practices”.

The club also said there will be “hand sanitisers and/or antibacterial handwash in all the washrooms at Anfield” as well as hygiene information posters.

Last week Newcastle manager Steve Bruce said the club had stopped their morning handshake ritual while West Ham boss David Moyes said the players would be fist bumping instead of shaking hands.

Southampton also bannedplayers from signing autographsor taking selfies with fans.

League One club Sunderland have also told their players to not go abroad during their upcoming break.

You may also like

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: