Inter striker Romelu Lukaku has claimed that “23 out of 25” players in the Serie A side’s first-team squad had coronavirus symptoms as far back as 2019, but none of them were tested for the virus.
The coronavirus pandemic has swept across Europe causing thousands of deaths, with Italy among the worst-affected countries in the world by the virus.
So far no members of the Inter squad have been confirmed to have had Covid-19, however Belgium international Lukaku has made some remarkable claims about the health of his team-mates before the virus really took hold.
In an Instagram Live interview with Belgian journalist Kat Kerkhofs, Lukaku said:
“We had a week off in December, we returned to work and I swear that 23 out of 25 players were ill. I am not kidding. We played against Radja Nainggolan’s Cagliari and after about 25 minutes, one of our defenders had to leave the pitch. He could not continue and almost fainted.”
The player in question is Inter centre-back Milan Skriniar, who was substituted after 17 minutes of the game on January 26. Inter gave the official reason for his early withdrawal that he had not recovered fully from a bout of flu.
Lukaku said of the game against Cagliari:
“Everyone was coughing and had a fever. When I was warming up, I felt a lot hotter than usual. I hadn’t suffered from a fever in years.
“After the game there was a planned dinner with guests from Puma, but I thanked them and went straight to bed. We never did the Covid-19 tests at that moment, so we’ll never know for sure.”
Source: News update