MX23RW : Monday, April 19 16:19:52| >> :600:1460872:1460872:

Coronavirus outbreak sees Sunderland's next three matches called off

The Black Cats have had five positive Covid-19 tests.

Sunderland's next three Sky Bet League One games have been postponed after a further four positive coronavirus tests.

Matches against Shrewsbury and Blackpool and the Boxing Day clash with Hull have all been called off after the Black Cats informed the EFL that they could not fulfil the fixtures as a result of the outbreak.

The news comes less than 24 hours after the club played out a 1-1 draw with AFC Wimbledon at the Stadium of Light despite being without eight players through Covid-19 protocols.

An EFL statement said: "Sunderland AFC's next three Sky Bet League One Fixtures against Shrewsbury Town (Saturday, 19 December), Blackpool (Tuesday, 22 December) and Hull City (Saturday, 26 December) have been suspended.

"The club has today informed the EFL that they will be unable to fulfil the fixtures following guidance from the local authorities, including Public Health England, on Wednesday that has resulted in facilities at the club being closed.

"After one senior player tested positive for coronavirus on Monday, selected players and staff undertook additional testing and a further four cases of coronavirus have now been confirmed and therefore all those affected are required to self-isolate for 10 days as per guidance in order to mitigate against the risk of further infection.

"Sunderland AFC, the EFL and the relevant authorities will be conducting a thorough review of the club's Covid-19 secure procedures with a view to reopening the stadium and training ground as soon as possible."

Black Cats head coach Lee Johnson voiced his anger at the decision to go ahead with Tuesday night's game after the final whistle following talks with the EFL earlier in the day, prompting the governing body to clarify the rules and insist that it was only the club which could have postponed it.

As in all cases of this nature, the EFL will now conduct an investigation.

The statement continued: "The safety and well-being of players is a priority and the protocols that have been developed are designed to protect individuals and, if followed, will help prevent the spread of infection.

"All EFL clubs are aware of the processes and steps needed to take in the event of positive cases of Covid-19 and the impact this could have on their wider playing squads. This includes informing the League if they determine they are not able to fulfil a fixture safely.

"The circumstances surrounding the postponements will now be the subject of an investigation in accordance with EFL regulations.

"Revised dates for the rearranged fixtures will be confirmed in due course."

ID:426780: cacheID:426780:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:restore:4144:
Restore Data
Share this article now:
Did you know...?
Oliver Dowden pictured in March 2020
Read Next:
Ten clubs to admit up to 1,000 fans at league matches this weekend
>
Read more about Lee Johnson Football

rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Hull City422571073334082
2Peterborough UnitedPeterborough412471073393479
3Sunderland411914861342771
4Lincoln CityLincoln402091162422069
5Blackpool4019111053351868
6Oxford UnitedOxford Utd421981566511565
7Portsmouth411981457431465
8Charlton AthleticCharlton401712115751663
9Ipswich TownIpswich411710144141061
10Doncaster RoversDoncaster40186165755260
11Gillingham42178175857159
12MK Dons421610165658-258
13Accrington StanleyAccrington411610155360-758
14Fleetwood TownFleetwood411511154435956
15Crewe AlexandraCrewe411510164756-955
16Plymouth ArgylePlymouth421411175167-1653
17Burton Albion411410175464-1052
18Shrewsbury TownShrewsbury401214144448-450
19AFC Wimbledon411112184863-1545
20Wigan AthleticWigan42128224768-2144
21Northampton TownNorthampton421010223561-2640
22Rochdale41912205272-2039
23Bristol Rovers42108244065-2538
24Swindon TownSwindon42114274778-3137

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!