England

Update on Mason Mount & Ben Chilwell status ahead of Germany game

Tom Gott
Mason Mount & Ben Chilwell are in isolation
Mason Mount & Ben Chilwell are in isolation / ARMEND NIMANI/Getty Images
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The English FA have written to Public Health England to request permission for Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell to join in socially distanced training with the rest of the squad ahead of Tuesday's meeting with Germany.

The Chelsea pair were forced to miss the final group stage game against the Czech Republic after coming into close contact with Scotland's Billy Gilmour, who later tested positive for COVID-19, and PHE ruled that the duo must remain in self-isolation until Tuesday.

That would obviously make it very hard for either Mount or Chilwell to play in the round of 16 tie against Germany, given neither would have trained with the team before the game, but the Daily Mail state that the FA are exploring ways to bring the pair back early.

The England chiefs have reached out to PHE to find out whether Mount and Chilwell can return in an isolated manner. They have both tested negative for COVID-19 twice already and will continue to be tested daily to ensure there are no surprises.

PHE have previously decreed that Mount and Chilwell must 'train alone' until their isolation period ends on Tuesday, but England boss Gareth Southgate wants more clarification on that and wants to see whether they can be reintegrated with the squad in a safe manner.

Gareth Southgate
Southgate was not impressed with PHE's decision / Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images

England are expected to point to the socially distanced training sessions which were held when football first returned from the first lockdown last summer as an example of how it can be done safely.

While Mount and Chilwell would both still be banned from working in group sessions, they would be able to conduct the same drills alongside the main squad and could continue to be as involved as possible in the build-up to the Germany game.

Of the two players, it's Mount who Southgate is most keen to keep involved. There is an acceptance that the Chelsea man will almost certainly not be able to start on Tuesday, but the boss wants him as an option off the bench and wants him to be prepared.

Mason Mount
Southgate hopes to use Mount off the bench / Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

PHE's stance on this proposal is not yet clear, but they were not interested in listening to any of the FA's pleas when the ruling was first announced. The FA argued that the open nature of the Wembley tunnel means social distancing rules could be relaxed somewhat, but that cry fell on deaf ears.

In the meantime, Mount and Chilwell will continue to hold isolated fitness sessions to keep them physically prepared, but the hope is that they will be able to do some tactical work before the Germans arrive at Wembley.


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