Angola international Mateus Galiano has urged his countrymen to take the battle against the coronavirus seriously.
The Palancas Negras legend, who plays for Boavista in the Portuguese Primeira Liga, says fans must listen to authorities if they are to halt the spread of the virus in the country.
As of Tuesday, Angola had seven confirmed cases of the coronavirus and two deaths. Health Minister Silvia Lutukuta said the deceased are two Angolan nationals, age 37 and 59, who both returned from Portugal two weeks ago.
The country also has 1,089 people under institutional quarantine.
“Today I’m speaking to you as a citizen rather than a player,” Mateus said. “Let us all fight and prevent against this pandemic that is ravaging the world.
“Follow all instructions from the health authorities, and if you do that then sooner rather than later we will get our lives back. Times are, and will be, tough, but with everybody’s help we will win the battle.”
Mateus is a veteran of the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany and was named captain of the Angola national team in 2018.
He was captain of the Angola side at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, having scored four goals in their qualification campaign.
Mateus is adhering to the guidelines laid out by the World Health Organisation in the bid to combat the coronavirus outbreak, which include:
Wash your hands frequently: Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
Maintain social distancing: Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth: Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
Practice respiratory hygiene: Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early: Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority.