Premier League clubs warned by EPL chief over Covid protocols

Premier League clubs need to set an example in sticking to coronavirus procedures or run the risk of sanctions, the league’s president has actually alerted.

The EPL sent brand-new instructions recently consisting of needs that gamers tone down events such as hugging after objectives are scored and prevent handshakes and switching t-shirts.

EPL president Richard Masters followed that up with a letter to clubs on Tuesday, composing: “We are fortunate to be able to continue to play and bring our competition to fans at home and around the world.

“This brings warranted extra analysis and the Premier League need to take the lead in setting the ideal example to follow.”

Manchester United players clearly had not received the message as they joyously celebrated Paul Pogba’s goal in the 1-0 win over Burnley on Tuesday which sent them three points clear at the top of the table.

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said afterwards: “We’ll do our finest to keep with the standards due to the fact that all of us desire football to continue securely.”

Similar instructions have also been issued by the English Football League (EFL) and their chief executive Trevor Birch warned clubs on Tuesday the season could be halted if the government sees any further flouting of the rules.

Britain is battling a new, more transmissible strain of the virus that is spreading rapidly. Schools and non-essential shops are closed and people are being urged to work from home.

Last week saw the worst daily case numbers and death tolls since the start of the outbreak, prompting calls for even tougher rules, including increasing social distancing.

The Premier League has so far been forced to postpone far fewer matches than the EFL due to coronavirus infections. Only a handful of games have been called compared to over 50 outside the top flight.

However, there are doubts surrounding Aston Villa’s game with Everton this weekend which has already been moved to Sunday from the original Saturday slot.

Villa have been unable to fulfil Wednesday’s league clash with Tottenham Hotspur because several of their players and staff tested positive for coronavirus last week, forcing their training ground to be closed.

Villa had to field a team of teenagers in the FA Cup defeat against Liverpool.

Masters admits more postponements may be on the cards.

“It is currently clear that we need to do all we can to effectively use all readily available calendar slots,” he said.

“Provided there have actually been 3 considerable Covid-19 break outs at clubs to date and we ought to for that reason reasonably prepare for the reality that there might be more.”

He also warned that clubs’ requests for postponements will often be “at brief notification”.


Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.