How COVID-19 law change could hand Chelsea Champions League disadvantage

Chelsea draw Lille in Champions League knockout stage

After two attempts at the Champions League draw following a “technical error”, Chelsea were drawn against French Champions Lille in the round of 16.

It’s Lille in the last 16 of the Champions League! 🤝#UCLDraw

— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 13, 2021

Given that the Blues finished second in their group and could have drawn the likes of Real Madrid and Ajax, the out-of-form French side seemed like a win for Thomas Tuchel and co., as they look to continue the defence of their European crown.

However, new rules could change that.

New rules in France could jeopardise Chelsea

Now, a rule change in France has come about that could affect the Chelsea squad.

This comes as the French government passed a law that means to enter a stadium, you must be vaccinated, whether competing or spectating. As per the BBC:

“New rules in France mean anyone wishing to enter sporting venues will have to be vaccinated against Covid-19.

The French government says exemptions will not be made for athletes who are based outside France.”

How COVID-19 law change could hand Chelsea Champions League disadvantage

LILLE – (LR) Timothy Weah of Lille OSC, Jonathan David of Lille OSC celebrates 1-0 during the UEFA Europa League match between Lille OSC and Ajax Amsterdam at Pierre Mauroy Stadium on February 18, 2021 in Lille, France. ANP MAURICE VAN STEEN (Photo by ANP Sport via Getty Images)

And UEFA are unable to change that, telling ESPN:

“Each team will in principle be required to comply with the applicable rules in the country where the match takes place, but the specific competition Annexes — still under elaboration — which contain special rules due to COVID-19 applicable to the knockout phase, may provide further guidance in this regard.”

This means that any unvaccinated Chelsea players (if there are any), will have to be left in England for the away leg of their Champions League tie.

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Written by mettablog

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