Fifa writes to PM Boris Johnson over release of players to red-list countries

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Fifa president Gianni Infantino has asked UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson for exemptions so Premier League clubs will release players for World Cup qualifiers in red-list countries.

Clubs in England and Spain have said they would not release their players for matches in red-list countries.

“I have suggested an approach similar to the final stages of Euro 2020 be implemented,” said Infantino.

VIPs could attend later-stage Euro 2020 matches without having to isolate.

Infantino said it was a “matter of great urgency and importance”.

“We have faced global problems together in the past and must continue to do so in the future,” he added.

“I am calling on a show of solidarity from every member association, every league, and every club, to do what is both right and fair for the global game.

“Many of the best players in the world compete in leagues in England and Spain, and we believe these countries also share the responsibility to preserve and protect the sporting integrity of competitions around the world.”

Under current UK government rules, players would be forced to miss several games because of the 10-day isolation period required on their return to the UK.

The Premier League saidexternal-link its clubs “reluctantly but unanimously” came to the decision, adding that “extensive talks” had taken place with the Football Association and government “to find a solution” but that “no exemption had been granted”.

More to follow.

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