Burnley ask Premier League to postpone Watford match due to Covid cases and injuries

The Premier League will meet later on Monday to review the club’s request

Jamie Braidwood
Monday 17 January 2022 20:06
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Burnley have made an application to the Premier League to postpone Tuesday’s fixture against Watford due to a “high number” of injuries and Covid-19 cases in their first-team squad.

The Premier League said they will meet later on Monday to review the club’s request.

The fixture at Turf Moor was previously postponed in December and Sean Dyche’s side have only played 17 matches so far this season, fewer than any other club.

Saturday’s home match against Leicester became their fourth fixture to be be postponed due to Covid cases and injuries while a fifth, against Tottenham, was called off due to adverse weather last month.

In a press conference on Monday, Dyche said the relegation-threatened club were in a worse position than they had been before the Premier League agreed to call off Saturday’s match against Leicester, with Charlie Taylor having taking a knock in training to add to the list of absentees.

“We’re at such a stretched moment in time that it’s very difficult all round,” Dyche said. “At training today there were 10 recognised first-team players. That’s where we’re at.”

Premier League guidance says clubs should have a minimum of 13 outfield players and one goalkeeper available for a match to go ahead, though applications for postponements can also be accepted under other circumstances.

“We know over the last few weeks how clear the Premier League has been on the whys and wherefores and the level it needs to get to,” Dyche added. “We’ve put the application in in good faith. It’s only three days on from a game that was called off…

“We’ve worked really hard to get games on when we’ve been stretched but it’s just too far below the threshold.”

Burnley sit bottom of the Premier League with 11 points but have games in hand on all of the teams above them. Watford are 17th, three points above Burnley but having played two games more.

Last weekend, the Premier League’s decision to accept a request from Arsenal to call off their fixture against Tottenham led to a furious response from Spurs, who said they were “extremely surprised” by the postponement.

Spurs said in a statement how they believe the rule set out regarding fixture postponements due to Covid-19 cases are not being followed as intended, adding: “It is important to have clarity and consistency on the application of the rule.”

Additional reporting from PA

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