A Premier League match between Manchester City and second-placed Everton has been postponed after a number of City players tested positive for the coronavirus. A City statement said:
Manchester City FC can confirm that this evening’s Premier League fixture at Everton has been postponed.
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After the latest round of Covid-19 testing, the club returned a number of positive cases, in addition to the four already reported on Christmas Day.
With the security of the bubble compromised, there posed a risk that the virus could spread further amongst the squad, the staff and potentially beyond.
Based on strong medical advice the Premier League, in consultation with both clubs, have decided to postpone the fixture.
All positive cases involving players and staff will observe a period of self-isolation in accordance with Premier League and UK Government protocol on quarantine. The first team training ground at City Football Academy will close for an indeterminate period, with the squad and associated bubble undergoing testing before any decision is made for training to resume.
Everyone at the club wishes all of our colleagues a speedy recovery ahead of their return to work, training and competition.
A Premier League statement said:
Manchester City lodged a request with the Premier League today to rearrange the match following an increase in positive COVID-19 test results received by the club this morning, on top of the cases reported on Christmas Day.
This rise has created uncertainty and the Premier League Board received medical advice that the match should be postponed. The Board agreed to rearrange the game as a precaution, and further testing will now take place tomorrow.
The decision has been taken with the health of players and staff the priority. The Premier League continues to have full confidence in its protocols and rules, and the way in which all clubs are implementing them.
The League wishes those with COVID-19 a safe and speedy recovery and will rearrange the postponed fixture against Everton in due course.
Two more City players, Gabriel Jesus and Kyle Walker had already tested positive for the virus and the latest development is a huge blow for the blues.
More: Manchester Evening News