An investigation by Mike Keegan of the Daily Mail revealed that the use of 'snus' is rife in English football. If you are unaware, snus is a substance that is illegal to sell in the UK but not illegal to use, and while it is on WADA's watchlist, it is not banned.
According to New Nicotine Alliance website snus is 'a moist, smokeless powdered tobacco. It is sold as a loose powder or pre-packaged in a small sachet (a bit like a mini tea bag). It contains ground tobacco, salt and may contain food-grade smoke aroma flavourings, such as citrus, bergamot, juniper, herb or floral flavours'. Each pouch gives a hit of 27.3mg of nicotine, compared to 10mg from a cigarette.
The product is placed between the upper lip and gum and nicotine is released into the saliva. Snus has been linked to gum cancer as well as a host of other diseases and the rise of popularity of the product in the UK is thought to have stemmed from the influx of Scandinavian players into English football.
Jamie Vardy admitted to taking the drug in his 2016 autobiography and claiming other players have used the substance during matches. Sportsmail have also found snus debris in the King Power dugout earlier this month.
The use of the substance was discussed on BBC Radio 5 Live last night, with Jacqi Oatley joined by footballers Charlie Adam, Alex Bruce, and Stephen Warnock.
During the course of the conversation, Adam revealed that its use is rife across English football, by players of all nationalities.
It's big in the game. It comes from Scandanavia, and a lot of players are using it. Not just in the Premier League, but in League One, League Two, Championship, in Scotland...a lot of the players are using it.
Is it a more secret way of smoking? I don't know.
I don't know [if it's useful]. It's the in-thing at the minute. British players [are using it] too. It's rife in the game.
Stephen Warnock said that he didn't understand it to be a performance-enhancing substance: "I thought it was a relaxer, like a cigarette, to chill you out".
Bruce described how it is used:
It's a little teabag, the size of your little fingernail, and you put it on your gum. There are different strengths, and types, like most cigarettes. It basically just relaxes you.
You can watch the full discussion below.