With more stringent tier restrictions in England that are currently in place, the message has been for people not to ignore this. Unfortunately, over the Christmas and New Year festivities a host of Premier League footballers decided to ignore Covid rules and celebrate the time of year.
While most of the country abide by rules, some footballers are not
Seven Premier League stars were caught staging illicit Christmas gatherings, but the Premier League won’t impose bans on these players. This is despite the threat of the country and football being brought to their knees by the virus.
All this after a week in which three Premier League and a flock of EFL matches were postponed due to Covid-19 outbreaks.
The powers that be seem reluctant to enforce punishments on these players who are flouting the rules.
If Rugby, Netball and other organisations can offer bans, why not in football
In stark contrast, the Rugby Football Union has imposed bans for similar actions from players including former England captain Chris Robshaw. An unnamed Manchester Thunder netball player was suspended by her club for attending a New Year party.
However, all we seem to hear is Premiership managers including Roy Hodgson and Pep Guardiola apologising and stating it is wrong and we will deal with it. This will amount to an internal investigation, with the players receiving a fine. As we all know it is no use imposing a fine to these players as money is no object to them.
Let the fine money go to the deserving NHS
If they are only to be fined, then let the money go to NHS charities, the people who deserve this. The police may also fine them. But again the club will just apologise, the players will take to social media to say sorry.
The only way I feel to stop this type of indiscretion from players is simple. Ban them for a few games. Either the club has to start doing this or the Premier League or EFL must intervene.
Tougher punishments need to be imposed
A three-match ban to any player who defies Covid-19 rules would send out a message to everybody.
On a personal note I would also deduct points from the club who have players not abiding by the current Covid rules. Simply a three-match ban for the player and a points deduction for the players club will stop this.
It might seem harsh on the club
Some people will say it will be harsh on the club who are not responsible for the players actions. No, the club should also be responsible for their actions. After all these players are representing the good name of the club. At the moment they are not giving themselves or their clubs a good name. This has got to change for the better.