Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has confirmed that the club’s midfielder, N’Golo Kante has tested positive for COVID-19, and said Kante must “quarantine and follow the government protocols.”
Tuchel said Kante was not at training on Tuesday as Chelsea prepared for their Champions League Group H match against Juventus on Wednesday.
Tuchel did not address Kante’s vaccination status in his press conference ahead of the game with Juventus, for which Christian Pulisic, Mason Mount and Reece James are also missing with injuries.
Asked to address vaccination rates within his squad, Tuchel said: “I don’t know the percentage actually. We are only a reflection of society and the players are adults and have a free choice if they want to get vaccinated or not. We should accept it.
“This is more or less everything I can say. I know the situation is far from over and every time someone gets it here or from our group it makes you very aware it’s not over. I hope it gets as small as possible but I clearly don’t have the solution to this.”
As to whether he would be pushing for his players to get vaccinated, he added: “It would be easy to say yes [players should get vaccinated] and get the applause for lots of people but do I have the right to say it? I’m not so sure. I can make the decision for myself… Vaccination seems to be a proper protection, I am vaccinated, but I don’t really see myself in the proper position to speak out with recommendations. That would go too far. I’m a football coach, I’m not 100 percent expert in this.
“Everyone is adult enough, we live in a free society. People can take their choices.
“We are not angry at N’Golo. I’m concerned about him, I’m worried about him like I am my injured players who take a kick in the game.” He said