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Coronavirus: Three Leicester players exhibiting symptoms

"We've followed procedures and (as a precaution) they have been kept away from the squad," Rodgers says; Leicester due to face Watford on Saturday lunchtime

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Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers says three first-team players are in self-isolation after showing symptoms of coronavirus

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has confirmed three of his players are being kept away from the rest of the squad after displaying coronavirus symptoms.

Leicester are scheduled to face Watford at Vicarage Road in the Premier League in a lunchtime kick-off on Saturday.

Rodgers did not confirm which players may be affected.

"We've had a few players that have shown symptoms and signs (of coronavirus). We've followed procedures and (as a precaution) they have been kept away from the squad," Rodgers said.

"We've self-isolated the three of them and we'll see how that develops in the next couple of days

"This is about health, this is more than football. This is about players and their families, so any risks that are there for their health and everyone else's, we have to mitigate against that.

"The game is all about the players and the fans. If you have one of those not there, it's obviously not the same."

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It remains unclear whether the Premier League will be suspended, or whether games will be forced to be played behind closed doors as the coronavirus pandemic spreads, but Rodgers says the public's safety must be paramount.

"Of course from a football perspective it would be a shame, but I think the public's health is the most important aspect in all of this," Rodgers said.

"For us working in football it is having that agility to move with whatever happens.

"Of course we are clearly guided by the government and federations so we have to get on with our work and prepare as normal of course but this is something that can change very, very quickly."

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, Sky Sports News will broadcast three special programmes on Thursday at 5pm, 6pm and 10pm (UK time) - Coronavirus In Sport.

Full statement from Leicester

'Leicester City Football Club can confirm that, as a precautionary measure, three members of its first team squad have undertaken a period of self-isolation following recent medical advice.

'In recent days, all three players presented with extremely mild illness and were advised by Club medical staff, consistent with current government guidance, to stay home and contact the NHS 111 service. All three players were subsequently advised by NHS 111 that their symptoms were consistent with common seasonal illness and that a seven-day period of self-isolation was appropriate as a precaution. There was no recommendation that further testing would be necessary. The Club is in regular contact with the relevant players, whose symptoms remain mild and self-manageable.

'In the current medical climate, the Club is acutely aware of its responsibilities to all of its employees and has issued extensive internal advice consistent with current recommendations from the government and medical professionals on COVID-19 (coronavirus). All staff experiencing moderate symptoms of ill-health have been advised to stay at home, to contact NHS 111 and to follow their recommended advice.

'Supporters are asked to actively seek out the latest government advice on best practice in relation to stopping the spread of the virus, which can be found here.

'Anyone who has recently travelled to the United Kingdom from a country with a high risk of coronavirus should immediately seek medical advice by calling the NHS 111 service, while anyone with flu symptoms are asked to stay away from King Power Stadium to avoid a potential spread to other supporters.

'The Club continues to monitor the situation closely and to take suitable measures to best protect the health of its employees, supporters and stakeholders.'

Pereira out for season with torn ACL

Leicester will be without Ricardo Pereira for the rest of the season
Image: Leicester will be without Ricardo Pereira for the rest of the season

Rodgers also confirmed Portugal international Ricardo Pereira will miss the rest of the season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in Leicester's 4-0 win over Aston Villa on Monday.

"Ricardo Pereira will unfortunately be out now for the rest of the season, which is a huge blow for us," Rodgers admitted. "He is a fantastic player.

"He had a challenge in the game which led to his ACL being injured so he will be for the remainder of the season.

"James Maddison will be out for a few weeks, probably until after the international break."

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