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Bournemouth player one of two more Covid-19 cases in the Premier League

In all, 996 players and club staff were tested over three days last week for Covid-19.

The English top flight hopes to begin playing the remaining 92 matches on 12 or 19 June.
The English top flight hopes to begin playing the remaining 92 matches on 12 or 19 June.
Image: EMPICS Entertainment

Updated May 24th 2020, 12:20 PM

AN UNNAMED BOURNEMOUTH player has tested positive for Covid-19, the Premier League club announced today, becoming the eighth case involving an English top-flight club.

Bournemouth added the player’s identity would not be disclosed due to “medical confidentiality” and that he would self-isolate for seven days.

“Following strict adherence to the Premier League’s return to training regulations, the club’s training ground remains a safe working environment for players and backroom staff, who will continue to be tested for Covid-19 twice per week,” said the south coast side in a club statement.

The Premier League announced yesterday that there were positive tests at two clubs out of 996 tests conducted on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The other positive was at a different club which has not been named.

That followed a first round of testing that produced six positive findings announced on 19 May at three Premier League clubs from a total of 748 players and staff tested. Those positives included Watford’s Adrian Mariappa and Burnley assistant manager Ian Woan. For the second round, the number of tests available to each club was increased from 40 to 50.

On Tuesday, squads started non-contract training for the first time since the Premier League was suspended on 13 March.

That an increased number of tests has produced fewer positive findings may be a boost to the Premier League’s ‘Project Restart’ plan to resume fixtures in June. Clubs are expected to discuss moving to contact training on Tuesday.

Officials still plan to complete all 92 remaining fixtures, with Premier League chief executive Richard Masters saying on Friday that they were “as confident as we can be” about restarting in June.

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Several players still have concerns about returning, among them Watford captain Troy Deeney and Chelsea midfielder N’Golo Kante who have stayed away from training this week.

As well as Mariappa, two members of Watford’s staff have tested positive while Hornets manager Nigel Pearson revealed on Friday that several of his players were isolating at home after family members contracted the virus.

Elsewhere in Europe, Germany’s Bundesliga has resumed behind closed doors while on Saturday the Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, announced La Liga could restart in the week of 8 June.

© – AFP, 2020

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