Top Premier League clubs WILL be allowed to play summer friendlies against foreign sides as legislation is passed giving footballers from amber list countries quarantine exemption
- Legislation will open the door for overseas teams to travel without self-isolation
- The top flight has been in discussions with the FA and DCMS over exemption
- Public coming to UK from amber countries now have to quarantine for 10 days
- Match organisers will still have to have plans signed off by local health chiefs
Footballers from amber list countries have been exempted from quarantine rules in a controversial move aimed at allowing Premier League clubs to play friendlies against sides from abroad.
Sportsmail can reveal that legislation has been passed which will open the door for overseas teams to head to these shores without the requirement for 10-day self-isolation faced by the public.
The top flight has been in discussions with the Football Association and Department for Culture, Media and Sport, with clubs desperate to take on sides from overseas as part of their pre-season preparations.
Footballers from amber list countries have been exempted from UK government quarantine rules
The top-flight has been in discussions with the Football Association and Department for Culture, Media and Sport
Currently, members of the public heading to the UK from an amber list country have to quarantine for 10 days and take two Covid tests. Should similar rules have applied to footballers it would have made friendly matches impossible.
However, exemptions have been brought in to allow such games under the banner of ‘Football Association approved elite international club matches’, along with the likes of Champions League and Europa League matches.
The rule permits ‘incoming international elite sportspeople to travel directly to the fixture on arrival in England and to fulfil the fixture without having to self-isolate (while within the event bubble)’.
Match organisers will still have to have plans signed off by local health chiefs and the FA itself. And the rule does not permit those from amber countries to head to the UK solely for a training camp.
Exemptions have been brought in under the banner of ‘Football Association approved elite international club matches’
Clubs had been scrambling to set up friendlies between themselves. However, matches with domestic-based, Premier League opponents are not seen as ideal, for obvious reasons.
Some may question the logic behind the lowering of restrictions for overseas footballers, given that the matches are non-competitive.
There may also be claims of preferential treatment, given those who wish to head to amber list countries on holiday will not be exempt when they return.
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