Tottenham claim Rennes clash is off due to Covid-19 outbreak

Jude Summerfield
Tottenham's fixture with Rennes won't take place on Thursday
Tottenham's fixture with Rennes won't take place on Thursday / Mike Hewitt/GettyImages

Tottenham have claimed their Europa Conference League fixture with Rennes will not take place on Thursday due to the number of positive Covid-19 cases at the club - though the French side have disputed their version of events.

A number of players and staff at Spurs have tested positive this week, with manager Antonio Conte visibly upset during his Wednesday press conference, describing the situation as 'scary'.

Spurs have now said the game on Thursday won't take place, with another statement on the rearrangement of the fixture expected in the future.

A club statement read: "We can confirm that our UEFA Europa Conference League Group G home fixture against Stade Rennais will not take place tomorrow (Thursday 9 December at 8pm UK) after a number of positive COVID-19 cases at the Club. Discussions are ongoing with UEFA and we shall provide a further update on this fixture in due course.

"Additionally, following discussions with the Health Security Agency (formerly Public Health England) and DCMS advisers, the Club has been advised to close the First Team area of its Training Centre at this time, in the interests of the health and safety of players and staff.

"All other areas of the Training Centre remain operational."

However, Rennes have contested that version of events, claiming a decision has not been made by UEFA and that they want the match to go ahead.

Their statement reads: "As the match is not officially called off by UEFA, Stade Rennais has stuck to its decision to play the game.

"[Spurs' representative] did not announce the number of players with Covid, even though the rule states the match must be played if the team has 13 outfield players and a goalkeeper. She claimed a decision from the English authorities, without providing any official documents.

"This lack of fair play is all the more flagrant given that Tottenham confirmed by mail early this afternoon that the match would be held, before informing Rennes of their intention not to play right after [the team] landed at London City Airport."

Tottenham's game at Brighton at the weekend is also in doubt. The club is expected to request the fixture's postponement to the Premier League.

Earlier on Wednesday, Conte said: "Today another player and another member of staff positive. Tomorrow, who? Me? Another member of staff? I want to speak about football. This is not a good thing for you, the fans and staff.

"Everyone is a bit scared, we all have families. I ask why? Why? Yesterday we trained and two positives, today we trained and after another two positives. Who next? It's not right, we're going home to our families."

Spurs are already a game behind the rest of their Premier League rivals, having had their trip to Burnley called off due to poor weather.

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