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FOOTBALL

Lehmann set for Arsenal return, eyes title

Ex-Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehmann has said he aims to help Arsenal win the Premier League title as he looks set to come out of retirement to help ease the north London club's injury crisis.

Lehmann set for Arsenal return, eyes title
Photo: DPA

The 41-year-old, who retired in May 2010 after winning 61 caps for Germany, left Arsenal in 2008 after making 147 appearances in five years, but is set to sign a short-term deal to help the Gunners out.

Lehmann is expected to sign as back-up until the end of the season for Spanish goalkeeper Manuel Almunia. Both reserve ‘keepers, Lukasz Fabianski and Wojciech Szczesny, are sidelined with injury.

He will undergo a fitness test in the next few days and could take his place on Arsenal’s bench for Saturday’s Premier League match at West Bromwich Albion.

“Arsenal currently has a goalkeepering crisis and I’d like to help out,” Lehmann told German daily Bild.

“This time I’m looking forward to being in a back-up role and will look to supporting Almunia. We can still win the title. We have to show that we are strong enough. I don’t feeling we’ve thrown the season away. I think we can do it.”

Lehmann was already at Arsenal before the crisis and had been working with the club’s young goalkeepers as part of a six-week placement for his coaching badges.

Arsenal are three points adrift of league leaders Manchester United, but lost the League Cup final to Birmingham and suffered exits from the Champions League and FA Cup to Barcelona and United respectively.

Lehmann was working as an analyst for German broadcaster Sky when Szcesny suffered a finger injury against Barcelona and admitted he is surprised at how things have worked out.

“I didn’t dream that Arsenal would then come and get me,” he said.

AFP/mry

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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