A group of Premier League footballers who were pictured together in a breach of UK COVID-19 regulations have apologized for their actions.
West Ham’s Manuel Lanzini posed for a photo indoors with Spurs trio Giovani Lo Celso, Erik Lamela and Sergio Reguilon on Christmas Day, alongside up to 14 family or friends without social distancing no mask.
The UK government has ruled that households in London are not allowed to mix on December 25 due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, with the capital and the South East rising to the level 4 days earlier.
Having been caught red-handed, Lanzini, Lamela and Lo Celso all apologized.
In a tweet, Lanzini wrote: “I want to apologize for a serious mistake I made over Christmas and take full responsibility for my actions. I know people have made difficult sacrifices to stay safe and I should set a better example. ”
Her compatriot Lamela echoed this sentiment by tweeting: “I want to apologize for a decision I made over Christmas and which I deeply regret. Upon reflection, I understand the seriousness of my actions and the impact it has on others.
“I’m really grateful to everyone who works hard to keep us safe and I’m ashamed to know that I’ve let people down.”
His Spurs teammate Lo Celso – the alleged host of the rally – also issued his own apology, writing: “I want to apologize to everyone – I understand the great sacrifices people make to protect themselves and protect their loved ones and the frustration you expressed. towards me is justified.
“I take responsibility for my actions, which I sincerely regret. I also want to express my gratitude to everyone who works so hard to protect us all and will do my best to set a better example in the future. ”
One image, posted to Instagram by a friend who has since made his profile private, sees no less than 18 people mingling without social distancing.
Lanzini posted a photo of his own home on Christmas Day in which he can be seen in the same room – believed to be Lo Celso’s house – and wearing the same outfit as the group image.
Both club and manager José Mourinho have expressed their anger over the conduct of Tottenham players.
Speaking after the win over Leeds, Mourinho told reporters when asked about his players’ rule violation: “We (the) club, of course, are disappointed because we give the players all the education, we give to all players all conditions, and of course we are not happy – it was a bad surprise for us. “
A club statement read: “We are extremely disappointed and strongly condemn this image showing some of our players with their family and friends together on Christmas, especially as we know the sacrifices everyone in the country has made for stay safe during the holiday season.
“The rules are clear, there are no exceptions, and we regularly remind all our players and staff of the latest protocols and their responsibilities to adhere to and lead by example. The matter will be dealt with internally. ”
Meanwhile, a West Ham spokesperson said: “The club have set the highest possible standards with their COVID-19 protocols and measures, so we are disappointed to learn of Manuel Lanzini’s actions.
“The matter has been dealt with internally and Manuel has been strongly reminded of his responsibilities.”