Tomorrow decisive for medical protocol

Tomorrow’s meeting with the Government will decide whether the Serie A season resumes or ends here, said one of the men who wrote the medical protocol.

The first version of the medical protocol was rejected by the Government’s scientific committee for being ‘insufficient’ and a new draft will be judged on Thursday.

If the protocol is accepted, then that opens the doors for Serie A to resume the 2019-20 season after two months of COVID-19 shut-down.

“The protocol is in a state of constant evolution. Ours was considered too complicated to be used effectively, or just insufficient in other ways by the Government,” Professor Walter Della Frera told Radio Marte.

Della Frera is one of the medics who helped the Italian Football Federation draw up the protocols.

“Tomorrow’s meeting will be decisive to set the final protocol for resuming training, and by that I mean as a group working together on the pitch.”

It was reported Italy were waiting for Germany to give the all-clear to the Bundesliga, which happened today, before taking action on their own league.

“It’s certainly positive that the Bundesliga did that. We must remember that there are two issues at play here, one is medical to guarantee the safety of the players and the other is political, because all this has to be organised.

“Players want to get back out there, but obviously remain worried about their own safety and that of their families. We know full well that there is no such thing as Zero Risk right now.

“We have to write up a protocol that everyone can agree on and allow football to resume with as little risk of contagion as possible. That is what the players are asking for.”

Minister for Sport Vincenzo Spadafora warned that if the protocol is not agreed by the end of this week, he may well declare the 2019-20 season over.

“We’ll see how tomorrow’s meeting with the Government goes,” added Della Frera.

“If they tell us that the risk is still too high, then the season will probably be suspended, otherwise they’ll ask us to further modify the protocol and we’ll have to see how that can be done.”

Torino announced today that their tests had found one unnamed player was positive for COVID-19 and he has been immediately quarantined.

“It would be a different situation if it happened during the training sessions or after the season had begun. According to the current decree, the player should be isolated and the entire squad quarantined for 14 days, so naturally at that point the season would be at risk.

“This is the Sword of Damocles hanging over football’s head.”

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