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Belgian Goalies Fake Injuries To Allow Muslim Teammates To Break Fast

Belgian Goalies Fake Injuries To Allow Muslim Teammates To Break Fast

This all happened in the 20th minute of their respective games.

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Injuries in a football match are common, but three goalkeepers during three different games in the same league tell a different story.


This incident happened during three of four important matches in the Belgian Pro Jupiler league last Monday (18 March).

Goalkeepers Herve’ Koffi (KAA Gent vs Charleroi), Maarten Vandevoordt (Westrio vs Racing Genk), and Tobe Leysen (OH Leuven vs Mechelen) had a sudden injury wave in the 20th minute of the matches.

So, what happened?

The reason behind the sudden injury tells a tale of great sportsmanship.

It is understood that this was a silent agreement among the players themselves to allow other players in their team who are observing fasting during this Ramadan month to break their fast.

Unlike in England, Germany, and the Netherlands where the referee can stop the game during the breaking of the fast, the rule does not exist in Belgium, leaving the players to find their own solution.

Thus, pretending to be injured around the 20th minute allowed the Muslim players to rest for a while to get food and drink during Iftar (the time when Muslims break their fast).

This is not the first time such a feat has been performed by the players. Last year, Luca Ranieri faked an injury during a match in the Seria A league for his teammate to break his fast.

When questioned about his injuries later, Vandevoordt laughed and said that he sprained his ankle for a moment.

“No, it was for the boys who are following Ramadan. This way they can quickly get some nutrition,” he added as reported by Tribuna.

Davy Roef, another player in the KAA Gent vs Charleroi game had intended to fall as well, but his opponent was too fast for him.

“It was agreed to do it in minute 25, but I saw Koffi go to the ground earlier. Apparently, they were on a different schedule,” said the Ghent goalkeeper.

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