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Premier League: Six positive coronavirus results from opening round of tests

The positive coronavirus tests came from three different clubs ahead of return to small group training amid the pandemic

Luke Brown
Tuesday 19 May 2020 16:30 BST
Coronavirus: How has sport been affected?

The Premier League has revealed that there have been six positive coronavirus tests from three different clubs ahead of return to small group training amid the pandemic.

The news will be seen as an encouraging development as plans to resume the 2019/20 season gather pace. The Premier League tested 748 players and club staff on Sunday and Monday, meaning that less than one per cent of those tested were positive for the virus.

The tests were conducted as part of the Premier League’s partnership with the Prenetics consortium, and are due to take place twice a week from now on.

Forty tests will be carried out at each club in each session.

In a statement published on Tuesday afternoon, the Premier League said: “The Premier League can today confirm that, on Sunday 17 May and Monday 18 May, 748 players and club staff were tested for COVID-19.

“Of these, six have tested positive from three clubs.

“Players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate for a period of seven days.

“The Premier League is providing this aggregated information for the purposes of competition integrity and oversight.

“No specific details as to clubs or individuals will be provided by the Premier League due to legal and operational requirements.”

The Premier League hopes to restart in June (Getty)

The round of testing is the first step in a plan to gradually resume the season. Clubs are now set to return to training with small groups of up to five players working together, while practising social distancing, with sessions to last no more than 75 minutes for any one player.

The 20 top-flight clubs unanimously agreed the protocols for small group training to resume and will gather again on May 26 to discuss protocols for contact training.

Premier League clubs will be subjected to spot-checks to ensure they are complying with training protocols, while the league has also committed to making every positive Covid-19 test public knowledge.

June 12 has been mentioned as a resumption date, but the league’s chief executive Richard Masters has said that was only ever to be treated as a “staging post”.

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