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30th Dec 2021

No vaccine? No play – Italy imposes strict new rules on footballers

New rules in Italy stipulate that footballers of every level must be vaccinated in order to play competitively, while stadium capacity has also been reduced

Reuben Pinder

Stadium capacity has also been reduced from 75 per cent to 50 per cent

Footballers in Italy of every level from amateur to professional must now be vaccinated against Covid-19 in order to play outdoor team sport, as strict new rules are implemented amid a rise in cases across the country.

As reported by Gazzetta dello Sport, there will be no exception to this rule for professionals, and “the requirement applies to all team disciplines.”

Other measures being implemented in Italy to combat the rise in cases of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 also include reducing stadium capacity from 75 per cent to 50 per cent upon the league’s return from its winter break on January 6th.

Fans must also have received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine in order to attend matches in 2022.

The new vaccine rule should not cause too much disruption or receive any real backlash from players, with 98 per cent of Serie A players already double vaccinated – a rather embarrassing stat for the Premier League, where 16 per cent of players have not even received their first jab.

Italy captain Giorgio Chiellini set the perfect example for his fellow professionals as he tweeted about receiving his third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, writing: “This morning I received the third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. Thanks to the vaccine and personal protective equipment, we are struggling to return to normal. Let’s all do our part, let’s get vaccinated for ourselves and to protect the most fragile people.”