Shirt swapping,team celebrations and spitting will be banned when Premier League football returns from the coronavirus blackout, it’s been claimed.
The Premier League is pushing ahead with plans to resume matches on June 12 in a bid to finish the season and avoid financial meltdown.
According to the Telegraph, strict sanctions will be in place in a bid to prevent any new coronavirus cases among players.
Aside spitting, swapping of shirts and team celebrations, stars will also be prohibited from sharing water bottles under measures to get football back under way.
The new rules could be in place for up to 12 months as football chiefs desperately try to finish the season.
On Sunday, the prime minister, Boris Johnson, is expected to announce the easing of lockdown restrictions which the Prem hopes will be the first step on the road to sport returning.
A meeting is planned next week between the Premier League and the captains’ group to discuss detailed plans for the resumption of matches and training where the new rules will also apply.
Club doctors have previously expressed fears about a return and these measures are said to be vital to any comeback.
SunSport also exclusively revealed nine Premier League clubs are ready to let stars duck out of Project Restart over concerns they will infect vulnerable loved ones.
SunSport has discovered almost half of the 20 Premier League sides now accept it is impossible to force stars back into action if they fear falling ill or infecting their family with coronavirus.
The growing list includes teams fighting it out at both ends of the table — as club bosses finally start listening to players, who are scared about being rushed into scenarios they feel are unsafe.
One source said: “If someone has a partner who’s pregnant, or close family who has cancer, how can we force them to play in those circumstances?”