In the latest incident, Adama Traore, who plays for Sheriff Tiraspol, went down clutching his chest in Sheriff’s match against Real Madrid after a touchline challenge. The winger could be seen in video footage turning to walk away from the ball after it went out in the 77th minute when he suddenly appeared visibly uncomfortable, clutching his chest and slumping to the ground.
Although he remained conscious throughout the incident, he did not react strongly to smelling salts used by medics. He was eventually helped off of the field, and his team has not yet released details about the cause of his chest pains.
Another recent incident saw FC Barcelona striker Sergio Aguero being forced off the field with chest pains in his team’s 1-1 draw against Alaves. The 33-year-old Argentinian was subsequently diagnosed with a cardiac arrhythmia and has been ordered to take three months out of the sport to rest. Catalunya Radio reported that his issue is so serious that doctors have indicated he might need to consider retiring.
The player joined Barcelona this year and underwent a thorough physical upon his hiring, so it seems unlikely this was a pre-existing condition. Aguero appeared in an ad for the public health department of the Spanish region of Catalunya encouraging people aged 12 and older to get vaccinated against COVID-19.
He wrote on Twitter: “Given the rumours, I will say that I am following the advice of the club’s doctors, doing tests and treatment and seeing my progress during the next 90 days. Always positive.”
At Euro 2020 in June, Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen collapsed on the field and suffered cardiac arrest. He was fitted with a defibrillator to correct irregular heart rhythms, but rules in Italy, where he plays for Inter Milan, ban people with the device from playing contact sports so he is unlikely to return next year.
Some fans report that Eriksen tweeted about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in the end of May, but the tweet has since been deleted and a team officials claims he was not vaccinated. There were some suggestions that he got the vaccine away from the team, but nothing has been confirmed. He is still recovering in Denmark.
In another incident, Icelandic midfielder Emil Palsson suffered cardiac arrest last month during a match in Norway’s second division and required resuscitation. The 28-year-old suddenly fell over at the 12-minute mark. After being resuscitated, he was carried off of the field and flown to a hospital for further exams and treatment.
COVID-19 vaccines linked to heart problems
Not surprisingly, “fact checkers” have been working overtime to claim there is no evidence that some of these incidents are directly linked to a COVID-19 vaccine. However, we do know that these vaccines can indeed cause heart problems.
The mRNA jabs from Pfizer and Moderna have been linked to myocarditis, a type of heart inflammation that can range in severity from mild to fatal. It is especially pronounced in younger people, particularly after getting their second dose of the vaccine. In one study, all cases occurred in males aged 20 and 32, none of whom had a history of heart problems. Nearly all of them reported chest pain one to five days after the vaccine. Myocarditis can also be caused by infections like COVID-19.