There is not only the alarm raised several times by experts in recent weeks or the perplexities expressed by the vice-president of the European Commission, the Greek Margaritis Schinas. Even the data on the outbreaks identified among the fans of Finland e Denmark, returning from the matches of their national teams in Russia or against the national team of Moscow, and of the Scotland, who instead faced England away from home. Now the German government is also railing against it Uefa, determined not to take any step backwards on the organization of the semifinals and the final of Euro 2020 in the stadium of Wembley, while the Great Britain is invaded by the Delta variant of the coronavirus which has caused a new spike in infections across the country. This time, it was the German Minister of the Interior who exposed himself, Horst Seehofer, which he spoke of “Irresponsible behavior” by the leaders of the association.
But it’s not just the English soil that is worrying. Also in Russia, for several days, there has been a new one resurgence of the pandemic, with record of daily casualties, while it is scheduled for Friday, a St.Pietroburgo, the quarter-final Switzerland-Spain. And the fears also involved the match to be held on Saturday at Olympic Stadium of Rome between Ukraine e England: the Minister of Health, Roberto Speranza, has imposed a two-week quarantine for those arriving from UK, but it is feared that many of the 4,000 English fans with tickets for the match will try to get around control by arriving by car.
THE ATTACK OF GERMANY – Eliminated from the tournament during the last match with England, in the round of 16, the Germany always keeps the attention on the ongoing European developments, especially from a health point of view. The idea that the last three games, the most important, are played in a Wembley ready to welcome 60 thousand spectators is unacceptable to the government of Angela Merkel. Not only for the high capacity allowed to the organizers, but above all because to this we must add the fact that the Great Britain it is the European country most affected by the contagious disease to date Delta variant which now represents 99% of new infections in the country. A more aggressive mutation that risks spreading even faster to the rest of the continent, again putting the health structures of the Member States in difficulty with a new peak of infections as occurred in the Kingdom.
“I believe that Uefa’s behavior is absolutely irresponsible”, said Seehofer, answering a question about the European final in London at a press conference in Berlin, together with the Minister of Health. Jens Spahn. “I suspect there is a commercial issue and such reasons should not prevail over health protection. I can only appeal to the organization, he concluded, to review its position ”.
RUSSIAN FOCOLAIO – It is not only Great Britain that worries organizers and European countries. Another red alert match is scheduled for Friday evening: the quarter-finals between Switzerland e Spain. Not for the teams that will face each other on the pitch and, consequently, in the stands, but for the location of the event: the stadium of St.Pietroburgo. Russia is in fact registering a new peak of infections, also due to the low level of immunization of the population, with continuous records of victims: in the last 24 hours alone, the health authorities have identified 23,543 cases of Covid-19, maximum since January 17 , with 672 victims, a new negative record. The arrival of Swiss supporters and the Roja risks becoming the link for Covid, a bit like what happened with the Finnish and Danish fans who have reached or met Russia on their path.
ALARM ALSO IN ITALY – Then there is the question of the English national team. Men of Southgate they won the qualification for the quarterfinals at the expense of Germany and will now face Ukraine at the Olimpico in Rome. A situation that, given the new peak of infections linked to the Delta variant in the country, especially among young people, worries the Interior Ministry and the Ministry of Health who, now, will have to understand how to manage the possible influx of 4mila fan arriving from London and from the rest of the country. This is the first away match in the entire tournament for Kane and companions and Italy will be the host country. 2 thousand tickets have already been sold to the British, while the same number are available to the Football Association which, however, has blocked the box office for residents at home. The provisions of the Italian government impose a 5-day quarantine for those who want to arrive from Great Britain: in this way, none of the fans could enter the country. But strict border controls will be needed because many are expected to try to circumvent the provisions.
To try to stem such attempts, the italian embassy in london has issued a statement addressed to the British media in which it is pointed out that anyone arriving in Rome from the United Kingdom these days will not be admitted to the Olympic stadium “Even if in possession of a ticket”. The ban applies to all those who have been in the Kingdom in the last 14 days, “regardless of their nationality or residence”. A strategy also followed the invitation of the British authorities not to undertake trips to Italy.
However, the Undersecretary of Health is not particularly worried, Andrea Costa, what a host of The Breakfast Club its Radio Capital he said that “the mandatory quarantine ordinance is already very restrictive. A total blockade is not needed at this moment ”of flights from the Kingdom. “There is a very precise rule that must be respected: for every Englishman who arrives there is one five-day quarantine and this will not allow the fans who have left in the last few days to go and see the game. So I think they will stay at home. This quarantine will be monitored. We are not talking about very large numbers, so the controls will not be difficult. As an Italian I am more worried by Lukaku than from the arrival of the English fans ”.
Strict controls are also invoked by the other undersecretary of health, Pierpaolo Sileri, who recalled how “the quarantine must be strictly observed. In the United Kingdom the number of infections is on the rise and so is that of deaths, albeit slightly. The displacement of thousands of people from areas where the virus circulates in that way involves obvious risks“. His position is more cautious regarding the ability to control possible flows from Great Britain: “It is not easy to control thousands of people, just as it is not easy to guard all possible points of arrival in our country – he added – A plan to deal with the situation is in the process of being defined, I am confident in the work of the competent authorities. I personally would put targeted checks also at the entrance to the stadium as an extreme barrier. If you want to enter, you have to prove when you entered Italy ”.
The councilor for health, Alessio D’Amato, on the other hand, is extremely worried and hopes that Saturday’s game does not become a case like the Champions League game between Atalanta e Valencia which turned out to be “one viral bomb during the first wave, it was devastating in terms of infections for Covid for our country. I would not like the day after tomorrow in Rome, with the arrival of the English fans for England-Ukraine, we would find ourselves in the same conditions. Italy has already given, you can’t die for a football match“.
Among virologists, who expresses their fears for the match on Friday night is Fabrizio Pregliasco, lecturer at the State University of Milan: “It is evident that this mixing and moving people is not good, the situation must be brought under control – he declared – At this stage we must continue with a systematic tracking and the job well done so far with respect to a risk of a resumption of the incidence. It is clear that the Delta variant is a natural thing and it is not the apocalypse that is coming but it is an element that can make us live in a more or less civilized way with this virus “.