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Nuno Espirito Santo concerned over lasting damage of another shutdown

Nuno Espirito Santo concerned over lasting damage of another shutdown
© Reuters
Wolves host Everton on Tuesday amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo fears of lasting damage to football if the Premier League is forced to stop again.

The Molineux chief is concerned for the game's long-term future amid the coronavirus pandemic with cases rising at an alarming rate.

Aston Villa's game with Tottenham has been postponed after an outbreak at the Midlands club – meaning Spurs now host Fulham on Wednesday at short notice.

Liverpool and Manchester United were revealed to be in talks for FIFA-backed European Premier League in October while Project Big Picture, a revamp of the English top flight which suggested reducing teams to 18 and scrapping the EFL Cup, has also been discussed.

Wolves host Everton on Tuesday as the Premier League perseveres but Nuno remains worried.

He said: "If we stop everything will change. A new football will come, probably with a Super League, probably with other competitions. It'll be a matter of which clubs will survive. It's a tough decision to make.

"I don't know what is better. What I'm afraid of is, if the decision is to stop, football we know now will not be the same. This is my biggest fear. The schedule will go crazy and it'll be impossible to finish the league and think about the Euros.

"We cannot move forward and go back to a normal situation. The virus and pandemic is affecting things a lot, the increase of cases is growing in a scary way. This is what my main concern is.

"Things have changed, almost a year ago we were stopping because we didn't know what was happening. It was something we hadn't experienced. There were a lot of doubts.

"After the restart everyone made a big effort. There were protocols, meetings, things exchanged, we were sure no matter what we were playing because we only needed 14 players. Now things have changed and we are starting to think about stopping again.

"If you have a crisis the strong will survive, what about the rest? My personal view, when I have an awareness of what's going around, you will not find the same model we have now."

Wolves are without Raul Jimenez (fractured skull), Jonny (knee), Marcal (groin) and Daniel Podence (calf) while Willy Boly has been battling a thigh injury.

The club also recalled Patrick Cutrone and Morgan Gibbs-White from their loans at Fiorentina and Swansea last week to bolster the squad.

Nuno added: "We still have time, the transfer window is open and we have to be ready for what can happen. As long as the window is open we have to be ready to react and ready to rebalance if you still need more options.

"We have a very tough match. Everton have a fantastic squad and manager. Being at Molineux is always good for us and we want to compete well. We want to keep improving and have a good game."

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