All Muslims observing Ramadan must refrain from eating and drinking, including water, from morning to night for 30 days. Fasting is undoubtedly a burden on the body, and for professional athletes without proper nutrition or hydration, the “holy month” is an additional performance challenge. To show their compassion for their Muslim teammates, English footballers for Crystal Palace and Leicester City’s Premier League paused their game on Monday night to allow two players to break their fast.

After dark, Muslims usually break their fast with iftar, a dinner with water or milk. Although the soccer players didn’t have time for a full meal, they were able to quench their thirst and burn off a few calories. Shortly after sunset – in the 35th minute of the game – Crystal Palace goalkeeper Vicente Guaita held off a goal kick to allow the Muslim players of both teams to take a break. This allowed Leicester City center-back Wesley Fofana and Palace midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate to enjoy some water and energy for a moment.

Last week, Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers took Fofana out of the game after 60 minutes so he could break his fast. However, Monday night’s game marked the first time a Premier League game was interrupted during Ramadan to allow all Muslim players to have a drink. The decision was made before the game during a meeting between the two team captains. The heartwarming display of athleticism is a reminder to respect the beliefs and cultures of others. Fofana thanked the opposing club for their support on Twitter and wrote: “That makes football wonderful.”

This year Ramadan runs from April 12th to May 12th.

English soccer teams Crystal Palace and Leicester City have suspended their game to allow Muslim players to break their Ramadan fast.

The Leicester City x Crystal Palace game referee stops the game to break the fasting Leicester player

Via: @ if24hd_ pic.twitter.com/Rg5gG03aS1

– The impact of Ammar Al-Dar, O Saud, his people (@ ShanaFraser1) April 26, 2021

I just wanted to thank the @premierleague as well as @CPFC, @ vguaita13 and all the foxes for allowing me to break my fast in the middle of the game tonight. That makes football wonderful 🙏🏾✊🏾 # WF3 #PourEux pic.twitter.com/d56o8A8ZGo

– LAWESTT (esWesley_Fofanaa) April 26, 2021

h / t: [Reddit]

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