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First Minister hits out at Aberdeen FC players as the city remains in Covid-19 lockdown


By Scott Maclennan

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has warned that players who catch Covid-19 by not following safety measures endanger the return of football.

She was speaking at today's Scottish Government coronavirus briefing after it was revealed that eight Aberdeen Football Club players visited a bar in the city on Saturday.

Two were later confirmed as having the virus, with the other six now required to self-isolate, leading to the postponement of tomorrow’s match against St Johnstone.

Ms Sturgeon said the government would now be contacting all club captains and managers to emphasise the importance of continuing to abide by the guidance.

Hitting out at the players she said: "We are expecting members of the public to behave in a highly precautionary manner right now and when a football club ends up with players infected with Covid – and let's remember this is not through bad luck but through clear breaches of the rules – we cannot take even a small risk that they then spread the infection to other parts of the country."

She added: "Football has been given the go ahead on the strict condition that clubs and players abide by the guidance that has been agreed. If they don't do that they put at risk the return of the professional game.

“Footballers, as we all know, are role models and they should behave accordingly.

"It is also important to remind the club and, indeed, all clubs to ensure that their players are behaving responsibly.

“To say that this incident is deeply regrettable is an understatement, but it also underlines an extremely important point that any time one of us fails to abide by the rules we put others at risk and we give this virus the chance to come back again.

“That's something we can't afford to do, as we have seen every day of this pandemic."

A total of 101 people have now been infected in the Aberdeen outbreak, with 313 further close contacts identified and in the process of being followed-up.

Ms Sturgeon also confirmed that Belgium, Andorra and the Bahamas have been added to Scotland's quarantine list.

Anyone arriving in Scotland from those three countries, including Scots returning from them, will have to self-isolate for 14 days.


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