'No one cares about coronavirus in Belarus'
Former Arsenal and Barcelona star Alexander Hleb claims 'no one cares' about the coronavirus pandemic in his homeland – with the football season still continuing regardless of the rising global death toll.
European football has been postponed indefinitely because of the health crisis, but Hleb has revealed nothing has changed in Belarus.
"The coronavirus has closed the Champions League and the Europa League. This is good, because you have to try and stop it. UEFA have done the right thing," Hleb told the Sun.
"But in Belarus, it's like no one cares. It's incredible. Maybe in one week or two weeks we will stop here. Maybe our President is just waiting to see what happens with the virus.
"Everybody here knows what's happened to Italy and Spain. It doesn't look good."
He continued: "But in our country, people in the presidential administration believe it's not as extreme as the news says.
"A lot of young people and students here think like this. I'm keeping at home with my family. But when I go out, the streets and restaurants are still busy."
Hleb, who hung up his boots at Isloch Minsk last year, went on to sarcastically suggest that world renowned stars like Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could come to Belarus to get their football fix.
"All the world now watches the Belarusian league. Everybody should go to their television and see us," he explained.
"When the NHL closed the season, a lot of ice hockey players went to Russia to play.
"Maybe Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo might come to the Belarus league to continue. You know?
"It's the only place in Europe you can play football. At least then the people of Belarus will be happy."