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COVID-19: Return to Play guidance for football players

10 June 2020
With leagues returning to play after being suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FIFPRO wants to offer some health principles to professional footballers.

The world players union is delighted to see clubs and players back on the pitch, training and competing again. However FIFPRO would like to emphasize that it is paramount to protect the health and safety of everyone involved, including players, staff and public.

Reducing the risk of transmission of COVID-19 must remain a priority.

In some countries there might be sufficient resources to frequently test players and staff for COVID-19, however FIFPRO is also aware that in many countries testing capacity is limited. Not all leagues and clubs can perform these tests regularly during the return to play period (which lasts until local COVID-19 measures are lifted).

To help players in these countries and to minimize the risks of spreading COVID-19, FIFPRO created guiding principles.

 

1. Basic principle

Remember that the key principle is to continue applying the local public health measures related to hygiene (hands, sports facilities and sports gear), social distancing and unecessary gatherings.

Please check FIFPRO’s hygiene advice

 

2. Daily Health Checklist

Monitor your health status daily by using the checklist below.

FIFPRO Dailyhealth Check Web 1100 Final

If you don’t have any of the symptoms related to COVID-19, then you can train and compete.

If you experience any of the symptoms related to COVID-19, then you should ...

    1. remain isolated at home,
    2. discuss your health with the team’s medical staff and
    3. ask to be tested for COVID-19.

 

3a. When COVID-19 testing is available at the club

If you test positive for COVID-19, then you should ...

  1. ask to be tested again 7 days after the positive test (for confirmation),
  2. have at least a 14-day recovery period following the onset of signs/symptoms related to COVID-19,
  3. have a thorough medical examination and assessment for ruling out severe medical conditions,
  4. get additional time to gradually regain match fitness.

 

If you test negative for COVID-19, then you should ... 

  1. ask to be tested again 7 days after the first negative test (for confirmation),
  2. remain isolated at home until you are free from any symptoms for at least 24 hours,
  3. get additional time to gradually regain match fitness.

 

3b. When COVID-19 testing is not available at the club

If you can’t be tested for COVID-19, then you should ...

  1. remain isolated at home until you are without any symptoms for at least 48 hours,
  2. get additional time to gradually regain match-fitness.

 

4. Look after yourself

During the return to play period, you should keep looking after yourself to remain physically and mentally fit.

Check:

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