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Newcastle United member of staff tests positive for virus – Player lets slip

6 months ago

Fabian Schar is off on international duty, again.

The Newcastle defender joining up with Switzerland who have three games in the space of a week.

Switzerland face Belgium in a friendly on Wednesday, then Nations League matches against Spain on Saturday and Ukraine next Tuesday (17 November).

Interviewed by Blick in Switzerland, Fabian Schar has been asked about the demands made on players during this virus and clearly isn’t impressed. Though it is the international calendar and not club football that he is making a point about.

In less than three months since the start of September, Switzerland will have played eight internationals before the end of November, the NUFC defender clearly wondering why there is a need to play international friendlies in particular, when there are so many other games for both club and country.

As it happens, this time, Fabian Schar can only play the first and third matches of this international fortnight. Red carded in the last Swiss game in the Nations League against Germany, a 3-3 draw, he misses the game against Spain in the same competition due to suspension.

However, in the interview of more interest for Newcastle fans is that Fabian Schar has let slip that a Newcastle United member of staff has tested positive for the virus.

Schar says that a NUFC physio is the one that has tested positive.

Obviously the club have said nothing, so guessing they didn’t want it to become public knowledge.

There are weekly announcements of testing results by the Premier League but they don’t identify clubs or individuals, though sometimes the clubs and players / staff in question do it themselves.

The last testing results were made public last Monday (2 November) and the Premier League confirmed that between Monday 26 October and Sunday 1 November, 1,446 players and Club staff were tested for the virus and there were four new positive tests.

The players or club staff who test positive have to self-isolate for a period of 10 days.

As you will see from that part of the interview below, the likes of Switzerland have been impressed by the success in the Premier League of limiting the number of positive cases and ensuring so little disruption to the usual schedule.

In the eight rounds of testing so far this season, there have been 44 positive cases from 12,804 tests carried out.

Fabian Schar interviewed in Switzerland by Blick:

Fabian Schar, are you rested?

“Yes, why do you ask?”

Because you actually play through from now until next summer.

“There is a lot that is required of the players.

“It was clear that it was going to be tough and we are used to playing a lot.

“Apparently there are more important things than player health.”

You mean, for example, the friendly on Wednesday in Belgium.

“I understand the associations, they want and have to catch up on what they have missed.

“But one more trip, three more games in 10 days…I don’t know.”

Are the players involved enough?

“Unfortunately, not at all.

“Our opinion is never asked much but actually we are the ones on the pitch.”

How does the Corona situation feel in Newcastle?

“Not so great.

“Since Thursday there has been lockdown for a month again.

“Everything is closed, the restaurants, cafes, shops, gyms, hairdressers. Only the grocery stores are open.”

As a Premier League professional, can you go shopping?

“I also have to be able to take care of myself…With a mask and a distance it works.”

The Premier League has zero problems with postponements and almost no cases. Why?

“We have the positivity rate under control, yes. One of our physio is ill but not a single player. I haven’t heard much from other teams either.

“It’s amazing when you hear how many players fall ill in Switzerland.”

Do you have an explanation?

“No, I don’t have the insight but I’m very happy that it’s not the case with us.”

How often are you tested?

“At least weekly, mostly on Monday.

“And in the training ground, as everywhere, there are strict regulations.”


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