Cadiz defender Rafael Gimenez Jarque – known as ‘Fali’ – has claimed he will refuse to play or train with teammates until there is a coronavirus vaccine available.
A former youth player with Villarreal and Levante, Fali has become the first Spain-based player to publicly speak out against the proposals of returning to football.
Football in Spain is suspended indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic while the nation’s state of emergency has been extended to mid-May.
With a vaccine to the virus unlikely to be widely available until next year, there have been concerns expressed that football may not be able to staged with total safety guaranteed to its participants.
“We are crazy if we have any intention of playing football because we would be exposing ourselves to a high level of risk,” Fali told Spanish radio station Cadena Cope’s El Partidazo programme.
“I will not train or play again if there is any risk. If I have to quit football, I will.
“I want La Liga and health authorities to at least sign a contract with the players giving us 100% assurances that it (playing and training) is safe.”
Fali went on to say that it was the players who should have the decisive say on when football returns, amid statements from both La Liga and the Spanish FA that they are intent on completing the 2019/20 season when it is possible.
“This is our health and our lives,” Fali added. “Football will eventually resume, but players should be able to vote on whether or not we can play, and when that will be safe.”
Image via Diario de Cadiz