Newcastle Facing Further Postponements After More Positive COVID-19 Tests

Tom Gott
Dec 7, 2020, 11:45 AM GMT
Newcastle may need to postpone another fixture
Newcastle may need to postpone another fixture | Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images

Newcastle United's meeting with West Bromwich Albion on Saturday is at risk of being postponed after more positive COVID-19 cases were confirmed.

The Magpies were left with no choice but to close their training complex last week after an outbreak of COVID-19 failed to be contained, and it was decided that their scheduled meeting with Aston Villa at the weekend was no longer viable.

They became the first Premier League side to postpone a fixture since the pandemic began back in March, and as noted by The Telegraph, Newcastle are facing a second postponement because new cases of the virus are still being detected.

The club's training facilities have been closed for the last ten days, but the close contact between both players and staff before the severity of the outbreak was apparent has led to a significant rise in cases at the club.

While Newcastle have publicly refused to reveal the number of positive tests, it is understood that the total number is 'well into double figures'.

Newcastle are hesitant to reopen their training ground
Newcastle are hesitant to reopen their training ground | Robin Jones/Getty Images

A major problem for Newcastle is that some of those who have tested positive have subsequently infected family members, some of whom are seen as 'high risk', and club officials are reluctant to get the team back together until they can be confident that every case of COVID-19 has been isolated.

Newcastle are waiting for the results of another round of testing, but until the situation becomes manageable again, the training ground will remain closed and the squad will not be able to effectively prepare for their scheduled meeting with West Brom on Saturday.

Even if all the tests come back negative, Public Health England and Newcastle City Council could involve themselves and force the training ground to remain shut for a little while longer to minimise the risk of a second outbreak.

Should that be the case, Newcastle would have no choice but to ask the Premier League for a second postponement in as many weeks.

On top of the obvious risks associated with COVID-19, Newcastle are also wary of the fact that players may be at risk of picking up injuries if they are forced to play on Saturday without full preparation, so club officials are hoping for some positive news in the near future.

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