The Swiss Football Association has confirmed that Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka has rejected the Covid-19 vaccination.
Xhaka’s status was revealed after he tested positive and missed Wednesday’s friendly against Greece.
Like Arsenal, the Swiss Football Association has encouraged players to get the vaccine, but left the final decision to them. The majority of Arsenal’s players would have had at least one jab.
Granit Xhaka has chosen not to be vaccinated against Covid-19, the Swiss Football Association has confirmed
Adrian Arnold, head of communications for the Swiss FA, said: “Granit Xhaka has not been vaccinated. We made a recommendation that everyone should vaccinate, but he decided that himself.
“All the other players on the team have been vaccinated or recovered, so they are more or less safe. Now Granit has unfortunately been caught. From a sporting point of view, it’s a shame for us.’
Xhaka is expected to stay in Switzerland for another 10 days and will miss World Cup qualifiers against Italy and Northern Ireland. He has been banned from Arsenal for the next three games for his red card against Manchester City.
Xhaka (left), along with wife Leonita Lekaj (right), ‘decided for herself’ not to get a vaccine
It comes as a Premier League and EFL survey showed that around 30 per cent of footballers in England have not had their shot – and do not intend to.
Anecdotally, the players who have not been vaccinated have expressed fears about side effects, as have some who believe there is no need to get stung while in peak physical condition in their 20s.
“Granit Xhaka was not vaccinated,” Swiss communications chief Arnold said today.
“He’s a player who hasn’t been vaccinated. We’ve left this up to each player, it’s a personal decision of each player – just like any other person in Switzerland.
England and Everton footballer Fabian Delph shared an anti-vaccine post on Instagram
Delph shared the message from US-based holistic medicine company The Healing Chamber
‘We have issued an advice that everyone should vaccinate. But he decided for himself personally. And it is also his right not to be vaccinated.’
Arnold added: ‘All other players on the team have been vaccinated or have recovered’ [from Covid] – so they are more or less safe, at least from a medical point of view. One is never quite sure. That is why we have a very high vaccination rate.
“Now, unfortunately, Granit has been caught. From a sporting point of view, it is a shame for us at this important moment.’
Vaccines are seen as a way to reduce the chances of contractions and reduce hospitalizations in those who do test positive.
Research has shown that different Covid vaccines reduce an individual’s risk of contracting or spreading Covid-19, as well as variants.
In July, England and Everton footballer Fabian Delph shared an anti-vaccine post on his Instagram account claiming that the human immune system can fight off Covid-19 without help.
That came when several Premier League and EFL clubs considered including vaccination clauses in player contracts as a condition of employment.
Midfielder Delph, 31, who has 20 English caps, shared the message from United States-based holistic medicine website The Healing Chamber on his Instagram stories on Wednesday.
Arsenal, which Xhaka plays for, are among the clubs that have suffered from Covid positions
“It is now a ‘conspiracy theory’ to believe that the immune system is capable of doing the job it was designed to do,” the post read on Delph’s Instagram.
Following a Covid-19 outbreak at Arsenal ahead of their season-opening game against Brentford, manager Mikel Arteta was asked about vaccination in his first team.
He said: ‘Most of them are double vaccinated. Others they have one vaccine.
“We are trying to encourage them to get vaccinated because they are going to protect themselves, their families and of course the environment around the club. But it’s a very personal thing and we try to guide them and explain why it’s better to do it. But in the end it is a personal decision.
“It’s not about protecting ourselves, it’s also about protecting the people around us. I think it’s a gesture of generosity.
Ministers want players to finish their shot and lead the way for their adoring supporters
“I don’t know if anyone is completely convinced to do it in the beginning, but you see the benefits are much greater at this point.”
But there are many footballers, such as Xhaka, who have so far not taken advantage of the opportunity to get vaccinated.
The Telegraph Report that new research in the English Football League (EFL) has shown that a third of players do not intend to get vaccinated.
Data from The Telegraph shows that around 70 percent of players at the EFL’s 72 clubs had taken at least one dose of a vaccine or were planning to receive a shot against Covid, leaving 30 percent having no plans at all to commit. get vaccinated.
That 70 per cent figure is in line with UK government data showing that 70 per cent of 18- to 29-year-olds had received at least one dose of vaccine.