Football: Unvaccinated Bayern star Kimmich back in Covid-19 quarantine

Kimmich (above) had just come out of a house quarantine, imposed when Bayern's Niklas Suele tested positive. PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN (AFP) - Unvaccinated Bayern Munich midfielder Joshua Kimmich returned to house quarantine on Friday (Nov 19) after having private contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19, ruling him out of at least the next two games.

Bundesliga leaders Bayern confirmed the news on Friday, when Kimmich sat out their Bundesliga match at Augsburg.

Bayern sports director Hasan Salihamidzic said the club accepts some players do not want to get vaccinated.

"My position, and that of the club, is that we all want to get vaccinated because that is the only way out of the pandemic, but you have to accept that not everyone sees it that way. It's a difficult situation," Salihamidzic said before kick-off in Augsburg.

Kimmich, Serge Gnabry, Jamal Musiala and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting are reportedly the only non-vaccinated players in the Bayern squad.

In Bavaria, fans can only attend games if they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from Covid-19, yet players must only show a negative test.

Kimmich, 26, only left house quarantine on Tuesday after previously having contact with Bayern team-mate Niklas Suele, who tested positive last week while on international duty with Germany.

As well as Friday's match at Augsburg, Kimmich also misses Tuesday's Champions League game away to Dynamo Kiev. Bayern have already qualified for the last 16.

Bayern are also without Suele and Josip Stanisic, both of whom are fully vaccinated, after they tested positive for the coronavirus.

Kimmich has been at the centre of fierce debate in Germany since revealing he opted not to be vaccinated due to "personal concerns".

He was heavily criticised and accused of neglecting his duties as a role model in Germany, which has one of the lowest vaccination rates in Europe at around 68 per cent.

Germany is currently in a ferocious fourth wave of the virus with record numbers seen this week, leading health minister Jens Spahn to describe the situation as "a national emergency".

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