• Sunday, November 27, 2022

FOOTBALL

Muslim players break fast mid-game, later thank Premier League

Wesley Fofana of Leicester in action during the Premier League match between Leicester City and West Bromwich Albion at The King Power Stadium on April 22, 2021 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

By: Pramod Thomas

TWO players were allowed to break the Ramadan fast mid-game during a  Premier League clash between Leicester and Crystal Palace.

The clubs agreed pre-match with referee Graham Scott that there would be a pause in Tuesday’s (27) game after half an hour to allow Wesley Fofana and Cheikhou Kouyate to break their fast, reported Sky Sports.

The match took place as the sun set, and both Fofana and Kouyate permitted to break their fast mid-game.

Significantly, because of the pre-match agreement with Palace, Fofana was able to play the full 94 minutes, the report added.

As part of Ramadan, Muslims fast during daylight hours, making it difficult for footballers to maintain energy levels.

It’s believed to be the first time in Premier League history that a game has been paused to allow Muslim players to eat and drink mid-game, once the sun has set, in accordance with the rules of Ramadan, the Sky Sports report added

Later, Fofana thanked the Premier League for allowing him to break the fast.

“Just wanted to thank the @premierleague as well as @CPFC, @vguaita13 all the Foxes for allowing me to break my fast tonight in the middle of the game. That’s what makes football wonderful,” he tweeted.

Vicente Guiata delayed taking a goal kick on the half-hour mark of the game to allow Fofana and Kouyate to take energy gels at the side of the pitch.

In-form Kelechi Iheanacho’s late stunner earned Leicester City a crucial 2-1 home victory over Crystal Palace which tightened their grip on third place in the Premier League.

The Leicester manager Rodgers substituted Fofana after an hour against West Brom on Thursday (22). He said he wanted to protect his player.

As part of one of the five pillars of Islam, during Ramadan, between daylight hours Muslims will not eat or drink as they show their devotion to their religion and Allah.

Ramadan takes place this year between the evening of April 12, and the evening of Wednesday, May 12.

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