Leading scientists have dismissed speculation the Covid vaccine is linked to the recent pitch collapses of three footballers, as sports experts have come under attack for fueling the reluctance of the jab.
Wigan striker Charlie Wyke was admitted to hospital on Thursday after a week which had already seen Sheffield United’s John Fleck and Sheriff Tiraspol’s Adama Traore suddenly fall ill.
However, public health experts and epidemiologists have expressed concern over the knee-jerk responses from former players who have suggested there may be a link to the vaccine.
TalkSport, for example, had to cut Trevor Sinclair, 48, from a show as he questioned whether Fleck, who collapsed in his team’s win over Reading, had recently received the jab. “I think everyone wants to know if he [Fleck] had the Covid vaccine, ”he said.
With former professionals, such as Ramon Vega and Matthew Le Tissier, also floundering to demand investigations into the links, the scientists responded by reminding them of their “public responsibility.” “Given the track record of some footballers in the area of anti-vaccine beliefs, it is totally irresponsible to make these unfounded comments, instead of dealing with them properly,” said Professor Keith Neal, who has 25 years of experience. in infectious disease epidemiology research at the University of Nottingham.
Professor Robert Dingwall, a public health specialist at the Nottingham Trent School of Social Sciences, said: “There are many reasons why collapses on the ground can occur, even in clusters. We must all be careful not to blame any particular cause until it has been fully investigated. It can be tempting to blame Covid vaccines, but experts have a public responsibility not to fuel vaccine reluctance without any real evidence that this is a common factor in widely separated events. “
All expert evidence concludes that the risks associated with Covid-19 significantly outweigh the risk of developing a blood clot after receiving the vaccine. Misinformation has spread after Christian Eriksen suffered cardiac arrest on the pitch during Euro 2020 this summer.
Inter Milan have since confirmed that they didn’t even get their first shot at the time of their collapse.
However, despite online criticism from TalkSport listeners, Sinclair, the former West Ham and England striker, doubled down on his concerns by tweeting 🙂 … are they related to Covid vaccines or not?
Le Tissier, the former Southampton striker, had tweeted that Fifpro, the players’ union, should be “a little concerned about the number of your members suffering from heart problems during matches”, while Vega, former Tottenham Hotspur said: “It has to be looked at.”
Professor Jonathan Ball, molecular virologist at the University of Nottingham, said: “These are rare things, which happen sporadically. Studies have shown that Covid is more likely to cause myocarditis and pericarditis than vaccines.
“People can break down for a variety of reasons, so while it may be tempting to link these events to vaccination, you need to be sure the association is true. This is what the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency is looking for – cases of rare events that are seen more often in people who have been vaccinated than you would normally expect. “
Wyke, 28, was treated by Wigan medics at the Christopher Park club training base before an ambulance took him to hospital. Wigan later confirmed he was in stable condition and speaking, but would not be available for selection in the immediate future. Wyke was confirmed not to have had the vaccine and all of his tests for COVID came back negative.
The incident came less than 48 hours after Fleck collapsed in the second half of Sheffield United’s league game with Reading on Tuesday. He received treatment in the field before being transported to hospital. Fleck, 30, was released on Wednesday morning.