It’s been nearly a month since football around Europe came to an abrupt halt due to the coronavirus pandemic that, according to Johns Hopkins University, has infected 1.3 million people worldwide and killed more than 76,000 people.
France has been one of the hardest-hit countries with nearly 100,000 confirmed cases alone. Since March 17, the entire country has been on lockdown with citizens needing a permission slip to allow them to leave their homes for groceries, medicine, and other essential items.
Given the serious nature of the health crisis and the strict lockdown, Paris Saint-Germain did give its players the option to leave France and return to their home country to self-isolate.
Neymar Jr. and Thiago Silva were among the first players to depart the French capital via a private jet en route to Brazil.
Silva’s wife, Isabelle, explained that she was finding it difficult to buy groceries as stores were depleted of supplies and that her family’s home in Brazil has a pool. She received some criticism for that comment but when you’re quarantined with children, having a pool does help keep them active and entertained.
Neymar also received some heat for returning to Brazil after he posted photos on Instagram showing him with friends playing beach volleyball. His communications manager was forced to release a statement that those in the photo traveled with Neymar from Paris and that they were all in self-isolation at Neymar’s lavish compound in Rio de Janeiro. We know Neymar enjoys playing online poker but perhaps he passing the time by placing a few bets via legal Australian internet casinos.
Edinson Cavani is another PSG player who returned to South America. A native of Uruguay, Cavani posted a video on social media encouraging his compatriots to take the coronavirus seriously and take every precaution possible to avoid the spread of the deadly virus.
Other players who have left Paris include Mitchel Bakker (Netherlands), Keylor Navas (Costa Rica), Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (Germany), and Thilo Kehrer (Germany).
Mauro Icardi’s departure for Italy is the one that is perhaps most troubling. On March 12, his wife and agent, Wanda Icardi, posted a photo on Instagram of the family, which includes five children, in Paris enjoying a meal.
In the days after that photo, it was revealed that the Icardi family had relocated to Italy and more specifically, their residence at Lake Como.
Behind the United States and Spain, Italy has been the hardest-hit country in the world by the coronavirus and the northern region, where Lake Como is located, has been a hotbed for confirmed cases and deaths.
Wanda’s ex-husband, Maxi Lopez, with whom she has three children, ripped into her for taking their children to Italy at this time. Mauro claimed they took every precaution when traveling but you can certainly understand Lopez’s frustration.
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