Arsenal latest Premier League club hit with Covid outbreak after positive tests in camp


Arsenal have joined the growing number of Premier League clubs affected by Covid-19, although no players have tested positive for the virus as of Monday evening

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Mikel Arteta determined to keep focus on Arsenal’s win over Southampton

Arsenal have reintroduced a number of protocols to combat the spread of Covid-19 after a small number of training ground staff tested positive for the virus, according to reports.

The Gunners have joined the growing list of Premier League clubs affected by coronavirus over the last week, with local rivals Tottenham hit hardest.

Aston Villa, Leicester, Norwich and Manchester United have also been impacted, leaving the Red Devils’ trip to Brentford on Tuesday night at risk of postponement.

Understandably, Arsenal are keen to avoid an outbreak at their London Colney base and they have imposed a number of measures to tackle the virus.

These include testing players in their cars before they are allowed to train, a protocol previously employed during Project Restart in the 2019/20 season.

What else can the Premier League do to prevent the spread of coronavirus? Have your say in the comments…

That is according to The Athletic, which adds no Arsenal players have returned positive test results as of Monday evening.

Mikel Arteta led his side to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Southampton on Saturday afternoon and they are due to host high-flying West Ham on Wednesday night.

Arsenal have already fallen foul of coronavirus this season after four players tested positive on the eve of their opening-day clash with Brentford, which they lost 2-0.

Meanwhile, the Premier League told all 20 clubs to return to emergency measures last Wednesday amid growing fears surrounding the Omicron variant.

Manchester United closed their training ground for 24 hours and they are locked in talks with top-flight chiefs about whether their fixture with the Bees can go ahead.

Tottenham have already seen two matches postponed, against Rennes in the Europa Conference League and Brighton domestically, and it is unclear whether Thursday’s encounter with Leicester can go ahead.

Spurs boss Antonio Conte was dealt a major blow as eight players and five staff members tested positive last week, and there is no elite sporting exemption when it comes to isolating.

This means any member of playing or coaching staff who returns a positive test must self-isolate for 10 days, alongside anyone deemed a close contact.

However, there is still a sizeable degree of uncertainty over what necessitates a postponement, as the Premier League has set no threshold of cases.

Arteta believes a cut-off would be “helpful” to eliminate any inconsistency, adding: “You don’t know when you have to play and when you don’t and we have some examples of that.”

After welcoming West Ham to the Emirates in midweek, Arsenal are due to travel to Leicester on Saturday.

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