Premier League returning?

Players and staff have tested positive for coronavirus

Independent

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

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.

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Will the Premier League stay on course to return?

By Joe Harker

Plans to bring the Premier League back are continuing under "Project Restart" but there have been a number of issues.

Getting the clubs to agree on when and how football is coming back to England and Wales is difficult. Many clubs are still not happy on the arrangements being put in place.

Playing behind closed doors poses more problems as it's not so easy to do. Keeping the crowds away to prevent the spread of coronavirus is all well and good but it takes a lot of people to put a game of football on.

The Claim:

Initial Covid-19 tests have shown six positive results across three clubs, with players and staff suffering from the virus.

A total of 748 players and staff were tested and further tests will be done twice a week, those who have had positive results are needing to self-isolate for a week to avoid spreading it to others.

Testing is the first step in bringing back the sport, without knowing everyone doesn't have the virus it's not safe to proceed.

If the league can't get to a point where players and staff are free from coronavirus then it can't safely return.

The Counter Claim:

However, the plans to return continue as players are resuming training in social distancing, with smaller groups working together in sessions to keep their fitness up.

Some players are not participating due to illness or concerns over the coronavirus but in general the Premier League is plodding towards a return.

The general attitude among most in the league is to return and finish the season.

Only six cases out of 748 tests is less than one per cent of tests showing up positive. The Premier League will be confident of a return if the number of coronavirus cases is low and manageable before the deadline.

The Facts:

While football has resumed behind closed doors in some countries it has followed the lifting of many lockdown conditions. The Premier League is attempting to return when much of England and Wales remains on lockdown.

June 12 is the theoretical date for the season to return, though nothing is set in stone and the fitness levels of players will be taken into account when the final scheduling choice is made.

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