Luka Jovic has tendered an apology after allegedly breaking the quarantine rule for coronavirus in his homeland Serbia. The Real Madrid striker, who has travelled back home from Spain to be alongside his family amidst the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, had reportedly breached the self-isolation regulations imposed in Serbia for people returning from countries affected by the virus and was on verge of being charged by the government for breaking the rules. “I'm very sorry to be the main talking point these days,” said the 22-year-old Madrid striker. Real Madrid had sent all of their players and staff into quarantine after a member of the club’s basketball team tested positive for COVID-19. Coronavirus: Two LA Lakers Players, Boston Celtics’ Marcus Smart Tested Positive for COVID-19.
Jovic had been given permission to travel back to his homeland to meet his girlfriend and family and returned from Spain last week. But the striker, who scored 25 times in 54 appearances for Eintracht Frankfurt before moving to Madrid, was recently spotted on the streets of Belgrade despite the country imposing a 28-day self-isolation for all those who return from COVID-19 affected nations.
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It was also reported that the government will charge the footballer for his actions and that was liable to be punished under the law. “The prosecutor’s office in Belgrade confirmed to Tanjug that it has instructed the police to press charges against soccer player Luka Jovic for breaching self-isolation measures after arriving in Serbia from Spain,” Tanjug news agency said.
“Jovic breached the self-isolation when he left his apartment in the Belgrade suburb of Vracar and his excuse was that he went to a pharmacy to buy medicaments. If he breaches the quarantine again, he faces harsher measures and possibly arrest. The law applies to everyone and the authorities will not discriminate regardless of what one does for a living.”
The 22-year-old took to his official Instagram page to apologise for his actions while also calling the media houses in Serbia for focusing their attention on him and leaving out the real heroes of the virus fight. "Since the situation in the world and in our country is very difficult, I have to come forward and give support to my people," he wrote. "First of all, I am very sorry that I am the main topic these days and that I am constantly being written about, not the heroes of this crisis, doctors and all the medical professionals.”
Jovic also informed that was tested negative twice for COVID-19 and also blamed the government agencies for misinforming him about the rules and regulations for the pandemic in Serbia. "While in Spain, I [tested] negative for coronavirus and decided to come to Serbia to help and support our people and be close to my family, in agreement with the officials. When I landed in Serbia, I was once again tested and coronavirus negative. It is very unfortunate for me that some people did their job unprofessionally and did not give me the correct instructions for how to behave in self-isolation.”
He added that he mistook for rules in Serbia to be the same as in Spain. "In Spain, I was allowed to go to a pharmacy and a supermarket so that I could get the groceries I needed, which is not the case here. I apologise to all the people if I compromised them in some way and I hope that we can manage to get through all this together. Support Serbia and let's stick together,” added Jovic.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Mar 20, 2020 12:04 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).