Manchester City return to training ground after reporting no new coronavirus cases

Manchester City due to play Manchester United in Carabao Cup semi-final on January 6; City closed their training ground on Monday after a "number of positive cases" which led to postponement of Everton match just four hours before kick-off

Pep Guardiola's side returned to training on Wednesday after the temporary closure of the City Football Academy
Image: Pep Guardiola's side returned to training on Wednesday after the temporary closure of the City Football Academy

Manchester City will return to their training base after reporting no new cases of coronavirus.

City closed their training ground, the City Football Academy, on Monday after returning a number of positive tests.

City's players were tested again on Tuesday after Monday's match against Everton was called off just four hours before kick-off.

Kyle Walker, Gabriel Jesus and two staff members had already tested positive on Christmas Day and were forced to isolate.

In a statement on Wednesday, City said: "Manchester City FC can confirm that first-team training will resume at City Football Academy this afternoon.

Gabriel Jesus
Image: Gabriel Jesus tested positive for coronavirus on Christmas Day

"The full Covid-19 bubble underwent testing yesterday, and results have so far revealed no new positive cases. Safety remains our number one priority, and the Club will continue to proceed with great caution.

"The first team training buildings have undergone a deep clean over the past 48 hours, and the majority of these facilities will remain closed, with only essential operations around training resuming.

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"The bubble will undergo further testing in the coming days, the results of which will inform and dictate the next steps.

Everton
Image: City's game at Everton on Monday was postponed four hours before it was due to kick-off

"Everyone at Manchester City continues to wish speedy recoveries to all of our colleagues who remain in self-isolation following their positive tests."

City are scheduled to play Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday before their Carabao Cup semi-final at Manchester United on Wednesday, January 6.

On Tuesday, the Premier League confirmed 18 positive coronavirus tests among players and staff in its latest round of testing (December 21-27) - the highest figure of the season so far.

Fulham's Premier League match at Tottenham on Wednesday evening has been postponed because of an outbreak of coronavirus at the west London club.

A Fulham corner flag is seen inside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Fulham and Aston Villa
Image: Fulham's fixture at Tottenham has been postponed because of an outbreak of coronavirus at the west London club

The Premier League made the decision to call off the fixture at a board meeting on Wednesday morning. It said Fulham asked for the game to be rearranged following "a significant rise in positive COVID-19 cases, as well as a number of players showing symptoms today".

Decisions to rearrange games are only in "exceptional" circumstances and judged on "case-by-case basis", said the Premier League, which maintains its medical protocols are robust.

Guidance issued to clubs in the Premier League Handbook 2020/21 is that "permission will not be granted to postpone a League match where the applicant club has 14 or more players listed on its squad list available". The final decision is always made by the Premier League Board.

EFL and National League hit by Covid

Matches across the EFL and National League were postponed this week because of positive Covid-19 tests.

In League One, Doncaster's next three matches have been suspended, while Rochdale's next two are off. Morecambe announced that their next two League Two games were postponed.

National League games at Barnet, Boreham Wood, Chesterfield, Dagenham & Redbridge and Sutton were also postponed.

Rotherham's Championship game with Barnsley on Tuesday will go ahead, but boss Paul Warne said the coronavirus-hit Millers are only fulfilling the fixture to avoid receiving a possible points deduction.

The EFL remains confident it can cope with the increasing number of games that are having to be postponed because of coronavirus cases.

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