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Football

CF Montreal Sell Striker Who Refused To Get Covid-19 Vaccination

Ryan Sidle

Published 
| Last updated 

CF Montreal Sell Striker Who Refused To Get Covid-19 Vaccination

Canada based MLS side CF Montreal have sold striker Erik Hurtado just seven months after he signed for them, because he refused to get vaccinated.

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MLS' Canadian sides have had to base themselves in America during the Covid-19 pandemic, with the teams playing their 'home' games on neutral venues.

Quebec and Ontario have now loosened restrictions which will allow players from Montreal and Toronto FC to return to Canada to train, although decisions on matches are yet to be confirmed.

However only those players who have had the Covid vaccination can return to Canada and that mean that Hurtado wouldn't have been able to go back, having refused to get the vaccine.

The striker only joined in February but has now been sold to Columbus Crew for $200,000 in general allocation money.

"There was some interest in Erik during the past few weeks and we listened to the offers, even though we were satisfied with Erik's work," Montreal sporting director Olivier Renard said in a statement.

Hurtado during his last performance for Montreal in May. Image: PA Images
Hurtado during his last performance for Montreal in May. Image: PA Images

"Because he's not vaccinated against COVID-19, his situation was problematic and we started considering a trade when we got the confirmation that the team could return to Montreal.

"Before proceeding, Erik also confirmed that he was not comfortable taking the vaccine, so we concluded this deal, which we felt was very satisfactory.

"We would like to thank Erik for his professionalism and wish him good luck in his career."

The move is certainly good news for Columbus, with striker Gyasi Zardes with the US national team for the Gold Cup and Bradley Wright-Phillips currently injured.

Hurtado had only played seven games for Montreal since his free transfer in February, and not since May.

Gyasi Zardes is with the USA team for the Gold Cup which starts for them on Monday. Image: PA Images
Gyasi Zardes is with the USA team for the Gold Cup which starts for them on Monday. Image: PA Images

The Canadians are currently in fourth in the Eastern Conference and are just three points ahead of their former striker's new club, but aren't due to face them until September.

Toronto FC could have similar decisions to make over players, midfielder Nick DeLeon said earlier this year he wouldn't get the vaccine.

The club's GM Ali Curtis also said that one or two players weren't vaccinated, or hadn't had their second dose yet.

Vancouver Whitecaps CEO and sporting director Axel Schuster confirmed that all his players were fully vaccinated though so they'll be fine.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Football, MLS

Ryan Sidle
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