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Manchester United game called off – Newcastle United one under threat?

2 months ago
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Manchester United put a request into the Premier League to have their game against Brentford called off.

This followed a number of positive Covid tests amongst their players and staff.

Manchester United also closed down first team operations at the Carrington Training Complex on Monday for an initial 24 hours to help minimise risk of further infection.

Their game at Brentford was set to be played at 7.30pm tonight but just before midnight last night, less than 24 hours before the match, Manchester United released a statement (see below) confirming that their request for it to be postponed had been granted.

At the weekend, we saw Brighton’s match against Tottenham the first of the season to be called off due to the impact of positive Covid cases, now we have a second.

The chances of that being the last Premier League game to be postponed this season is a massive longshot.

The Premier League on Monday released the latest results of league-wide Covid testing, the previous highest number of positives this season was 16 in late August, in the week 29 November to 5 December it had been 12 positives, the new figures for 6 December to 12 December saw that number leap to 42 positives.

At least six Premier League clubs including Manchester United, have confirmed they have Covid cases, thankfully Newcastle United not amongst those so far.

With Covid cases set to seemingly rise massively in the population generally, it would be naive to think this won’t be reflected in terms of Premier League cases, at least to some extent.

Whether specifically the Newcastle United home game against Manchester United is at risk, remains to be seen. That is in 13 days time and probably the key thing at this moment in time is whether or not the outbreak of positive Covid cases at Old Trafford ends up going far higher in terms of number of players affected.

Newcastle United ended up having a 15 days gap without matches when the Covid outbreak happened in late November 2020.

Manchester United official announcement:

‘Manchester United can confirm that our Premier League fixture at Brentford FC, on Tuesday 14 December at 19:30, has been postponed and will be rescheduled in due course.

Following PCR confirmation of positive LFT Covid-19 tests among the first-team staff and players, the outbreak requires ongoing surveillance.

A decision was taken to close first-team operations at the Carrington Training Complex for 24 hours to help minimise risk of further infection, and individuals who tested positive are isolating in line with Premier League protocols.

Given cancellation of training and disruption to the squad, and with the health of players and staff the priority, the Club requested the match to be rearranged. The Premier League Board took the decision to postpone based on guidance from medical advisors.

Manchester United regrets the inconvenience caused to Brentford FC and to the fans of both clubs by Covid-19.’

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