There are concerns about the escalating spread of the corona-virus disease, COVID-19 and just last week, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared it a pandemic.
The football fraternity has not been spared with several events, matches and activities called off due to fears of contracting the disease.
Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA) President Gianni Infantino on Monday, 16th March 2019 wrote to the football community urging them to remain vigilant.
Under these circumstances, we must now do everything in our power to protect fans, players, coaches, and everyone else involved in our beautiful game. Most importantly, the football authorities must take all necessary measures to prevent the virus spreading to the wider community.
Infantino states that FIFA is launching a partnership with WHO to use football as a vehicle to sensitize the public on how to curb the spread of corona-virus.
In partnership with the World Health Organization, we are launching awareness building initiatives designed to provide practical recommendations and steps to tackle the spread of COVID-19. I highly recommend you to also, at your level, use the power of football to send out and spread these key messages.
The world football community has shown a sense of solidarity and the FIFA President calls for unity in the face of this threat.
We should continue to do the same when thinking about how to address the consequences we will have to face for the future of our game, once this serious risk to human health is behind us. It goes without saying that we all have to take this matter very seriously while, at the same time, remaining calm and assured in both our response and our decision-making.
Some of the precaution measures include;
1. Wash or sanitize your hands frequently, especially before eating and after contact with people.
2. Avoid touching your face, in particular eyes, nose and mouth. This can prevent the virus from entering your body.
3. Cover your mouth and nose with a disposable tissue when coughing or sneezing and use the nearest waste receptacle to dispose of it after use.
4. Avoid close contact (within 1 meter / 3 feet), especially with people who display symptoms of the virus, such as cough or fever.
5. Stay at home if you feel unwell; develop fever or other respiratory symptoms.