Sunderland manager Lee Johnson has claimed that the heart problems affecting his goalkeeper Lee Burge could have been caused by having the Covid vaccine.
Burge, 29, has been ruled out of action for the League One side for up to five weeks because of an ‘inflamed heart’.
The goalkeeper was one of a number of Sunderland players to contract Covid-19 at the start of January but, while the others have returned to action, Burge has been unable to because of a lingering heart problem.
According to The Mirror, Burge has been told, as part of his treatment, that he must not let his heart-rate rise above 100 beats-per-minute during light training sessions.
Research by the British Heart Foundation states that there have been ‘rare cases of myocarditis’ – inflammation of the heart muscle – after people have had the Moderna Covid vaccine. Cases are found ‘even more rarely’ in those members of the public who have been given the Pfizer vaccine.
Of those cases of myocarditis after a Covid jab, the British Heart Foundation has found that they have ‘usually been mild’ with heart function ‘returning to normal’ in most. But Johnson, 40, said in his pre-match press conference on Friday: ‘It seems to happen a lot after these injections or Covid.
‘The weighting would be on Covid but you can’t rule out, I suppose, vaccination.
‘I don’t know, I am not a doctor. I get the information and the first thought is the player. Is he fit and well and survives it well and has a long career.’