Almost 2,000 Scots infectious with Covid while at Euro 2020 events, data shows

·3-min read

Almost 2,000 people living in Scotland attended at least one Euro 2020 event while infectious with coronavirus, according to official data.

New figures from Public Health Scotland (PHS) show 1,991 residents who later had a laboratory-confirmed Covid-19 diagnosis were in their transmission period while at competition gatherings between June 11 and 28.

Nearly two-thirds of cases – or 1,294 people – reported travelling to London for a Euro 2020-related event.

The report said: “PHS is working with Test and Protect and NHS boards to ensure that all public health actions are taken in the close contacts of these Euro 2020 cases as part of the 32,539 cases that were reported to the Test and Protect case management system during this period.”

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

Cases were tagged if they attended either a Euro 2020 organised event, such as a match at Hampden or Wembley or the fan zone at Glasgow Green, or an informal gathering such as a pub or a house party to watch a match.

The figures show nearly three-quarters – or 1,470 cases – with a Euro 2020 tag are people aged 20 to 39, and nine in 10 are men.

This includes 397 people who attended Scotland’s clash with England at Wembley on June 18.

Attendance at hospitality venues was the most frequently reported tag, representing 34% of all tags.

A “relatively small number” of cases in Scotland reported attending the fan zone in Glasgow (55), with 38 at the Scotland v Croatia match at Hampden and 37 at the same stadium for the Scotland v Czech Republic game.

Separate figures for people testing positive at all of England’s Euro 2020 group matches at Wembley have been compiled as part of the next phase of the UK Government’s Events Research Programme, the results of which are likely to be published next month.

Scottish Conservative health spokeswoman Annie Wells said: “While it was understandable fans were keen to enjoy the first appearance of a Scotland men’s team at a major tournament in over two decades, it is clear that greater precautions could have been taken.

“The wider public will be angry that those who ultimately broke many restrictions by travelling down south could mean our progress in fighting the virus is hampered.

“However, there was a failure from the First Minister and other SNP ministers to deliver clear and consistent messaging over the public health risks associated with travelling to watch football.

“They are now trying to spin a positive picture that they were on top of this situation which simply wasn’t the case.”

Scotland’s Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “We previously advised that fans should not have been travelling to London without tickets or unless they had somewhere safe to watch the match.

“Travel was not banned and we are not able to stop people from travelling if they decide to do so.

“We can see from these figures that there is an association with some of the cases we’ve seen in recent days and the Euros. This is likely to include people who were on coach trips to and from London.

“The issue of concern here is people coming together in enclosed public spaces, whether that’s on coaches or in a private house to watch matches or to gather for any other activity. That’s riskier than gathering with people outdoors.

“Anyone planning to gather indoors to watch a match should remember the household limits and take a rapid lateral flow test.

“We all have a vested interest in getting through the next few weeks as safely as possible because the end point is in sight as a result of the vaccine.”

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting