Premier League approve plans to resume non-contact training

Date published: Monday 18th May 2020 2:47

Premier League football

Premier League clubs have unanimously approved plans to resume training in small groups from Tuesday as part of the competition’s Project Restart strategy.

Players must practise social distancing at all times, the league said, with contact training not permitted at this stage.

Testing for coronavirus at top-flight clubs has taken place over the last two days, and will continue throughout the training period and the return to match action in a bid to make the environment as safe as possible for all concerned.

The league was suspended on March 13 but no date for a resumption has yet been fixed.

The protocols were presented to players and managers on conference calls which took place last week.

A Premier League statement read: “Strict medical protocols of the highest standard will ensure everyone returns to training in the safest environment possible.

“The health and well-being of all participants is the Premier League’s priority, and the safe return to training is a step-by-step process.

“Full consultation will now continue with players, managers, clubs, the PFA and LMA as protocols for full-contact training are developed.”

A statement on Newcastle United’s website confirmed players will begin phase one of their return to small group training on Tuesday.

“To ensure this is as safe as possible, Newcastle United kindly asks supporters and media not to travel to the training ground perimeter during this time and to continue adhering to the latest government guidance at gov.uk/coronavirus.

“Players, coaches and essential support staff have now been tested for Covid-19 at the training ground in conjunction with the Premier League by global genomics health business Prenetics.”

Players will be asked to use an app on a daily basis to record any symptoms.

Magpies boss Steve Bruce said: “It’s been a really difficult time, but I hope with the news that phase one is about to start – and I must stress that phase one looks as if it’s as safe as it can be – I’m sure everyone will be delighted that we’re trying to make that effort.

“In phase one we’re allowed to train four to five people on one pitch, so basically a player has a quarter of a pitch to work within, so social distancing is not a problem. We’ll train with eight to 10 at a time on two separate pitches.

“Everything is in place in the safety aspect. I’ve got no issues and I can tell the supporters the players and the staff are as safe as we possibly can be. We all understand that this virus isn’t going to go away just like that – it’s going to hang around a bit, but I think with the protocols in place we’ll do everything we possibly can to get up and running again.”

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