Frank Lampard bans group celebrations in training to help side comply with Covid protocols

“So, for sure, it’s something I will pass on to the players because you see a lot of these group hugs now when they win a five-a-side, so that will be something we’ll look at.”

Pogba added that he and his United team-mates will also be working on a new way of celebrating, without hugging each other, by saying: “We will find another way, we will find another way to celebrate and be happy.

“These rules, we have to respect them and we have to do it for the safety of everyone. We have been doing very well in Manchester.”

Rodgers said: “If players make mistakes celebrating a goal, it is an honest mistake. It is instinct and an instinct for as long as they have ever known. But if it means not being able to celebrate a goal, then it is something we have to look at and if it helps then we will do it for sure.”

Should players continue to break the distancing rules, there is growing concern that the Government will intervene because the ‘optics’ of footballers hugging, swapping shirts and shaking hands at the height of the new wave of the pandemic is creating a great deal of anger among the public.

Other than watching out for group celebrations, Premier League inspectors will carry out more spot checks on clubs over the coming days which will cover how team coaches are being boarded and behaviour inside hotels.

The Premier League may even extend its Covid testing regime to cover hotel staff who may come into contact with players. Compliance officers are already at club training grounds every day to ensure the protocols are followed with a list of fines for any breaches.

Lampard remained sympathetic to players who have spent months trying to follow the rules and have worked through the majority of the pandemic, but admitted minds should have been focussed by recent events.

“Some people are being asked to work from home, footballers aren’t,” said Lampard. “They’re taking themselves into an environment where they’re potentially putting themselves in danger and maybe their family when they go home to a pregnant wife, a grandparent, a parent, a brother, a sister. 

“I think we have to understand that footballers are human as well and they’re being asked to go and do their job. I think if you understand football, then you understand that it can bring out emotions in you. 

“To control emotions is, I think, a fair ask. But to dictate emotions will probably be very difficult on the pitch. I hope they can, but this beautiful game we all love does bring emotions out on the pitch. 

“What I want to be really clear about is players are being asked to come to work and they’re doing everything they can to toe the line, as is hopefully every person in the public, to get us through this.

“Some footballers have made mistakes, which some have admitted to when they have been found out, and that’s wrong. Some politicians have also made mistakes that when they’ve been caught out they’ve admitted to, so I certainly don’t think the spotlight should just be on footballers. 

“On the other side of that, I think footballers have to understand their responsibility and now that a few mistakes have been made, you hope we see less of that.”

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