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Belgium’s footballers ”turn down” the Covid vaccine ahead of Euro 2020

A number of Belgium players have rejected the chance to receive a Covid-19 vaccination ahead of Euro 2020, reports claim – with around half of the squad fearing side effects could wreck their hopes at the tournament.

The country’s government had given the green light for players to receive the jab, with the Belgian FA insisting it was a ‘very important’ move as they bid to win their first ever trophy as a nation.

Belgium – who are ranked as the number one international team in world football – are set to begin their Euro campaign against Russia in St Petersburg on June 12.

A handful of stars – including Toby Alderweireld, Timothy Castagne, Thibaut Courtois and Thomas Vermaelen – are all said to have received their jabs.

But with the team seen as one of the favourites to win the competition, some of the players refused to take the Pfizer jab in case it hinders their performance, according to Belgian outlet HLN.

Side effects for the vaccine include tiredness, headaches, muscle pain, chills, joint pain and fever – which can affect more than one in ten people.

Belgium, which reported 1,498 Covid cases on June 1, has struggled with the virus this year and only started to come out of lockdown last month – with non-essential shops and restaurants opening.

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