Six from 3 Premier League clubs have tested positive for COVID-19 on Sunday and Monday as the English top flight gears up to resume the season in June. The people who have been tested positive for the virus will now self-isolate for 7 days. Burnley confirmed that assistant manager Ian Woan had tested positive for Corona. A total of 748 players and staff across 19 clubs were screened for the disease.
Norwich City conducted their tests on Tuesday and is waiting for results. Squads are resuming with non-contact training from Tuesday. EPL has been suspended since March 13 with 92 fixtures remaining. The management has previously given June 12, 2020 as the date for resumption but the authorities are now considering to rewind the deadline.
“The Premier League is providing this aggregated information for the purposes of competition integrity and transparency. No specific details as to clubs or individuals will be provided by the league and results will be made public in this way after each round of testing.”
The franchises were allowed to test up to 40 personnel and some did not use their full allocation while some have not got their results.
At Monday’s Project-Restart meeting, English topflight teams agreed to go with one of the training protocols for return. The players will also be training in small groups of not more than 5 members and training sessions will be no longer than 75 min for each player while maintaining the social distancing measures. Official protocols provided to managers and players last week revealed that corner flags, goalposts, cones, balls and playing fields will be disinfected after every session of training. The players will have to undergo the testing twice in a week and will also complete a temperature check and pre-training questionnaire.
The German Bundesliga in a first resumed their halted campaign in empty stadiums over the weekend. It took the German topflight almost 5 weeks after starting a non-contact training. Going by the EPL’s Monday announcement it is expected that the contests will kicked off by either June 19 or 26. Every club in Bundesliga underwent a quarantine for a week as they were between their hotels and training grounds before a restart.
Premier League’s medical adviser Mark Gillett on Monday revealed that the decision about quarantining the players in the hotel for 14 days will be made in the coming weeks. Also, in order to complete its season, EPL will have to insure 40,000 tests on their own and none will be facilitated by NHS. The tests are being conducted by digital health company Prenetics.
Avi Lasarow, Chief Executive of Prenetics EMEA talking to BBC said that categorically none of the tests carried out by their company will be used by National Health Service.
“We of course do not impinge or take away from any testing the NHS is doing,” he said.
“All the tests are privately sourced, as well as the other areas of the supply chains, so they are definitely not taking away from the NHS. The government has an infrastructure capability which has been developed to scale up to mass testing volume. It is very clear that we can now see that happening and as an organization if we were asked to provide additional services we would prioritize that.”
Mr. Lasarow added that their tests have an accuracy rate of 98.8% which will further improve after the repeated testing of EPL players and staff. He also said that Prenetics dispatches the results in 48 hours.