Everton have demanded answers from the Premier League over why their Monday evening clash with Manchester City was postponed at short notice.
With 2,000 home fans due to attend the match at Goodison Park, the match was called off just over four hours before kick-off following several positive Covid-19 cases in the City camp.
With Kyle Walker and Gabriel Jesus having missed the Boxing Day clash with Newcastle after contracting the virus, it is believed that at least three more players and two backroom staff have tested positive after it swept through the team’s London hotel before last week’s Carabao Cup clash at Arsenal.
City said that with their security bubble compromised the impact of the virus could spread to others, adding “there posed a risk that the virus could spread further amongst the squad, the staff and potentially beyond.”
The Premier League agreed to the postponement on safety grounds, saying: “The Board agreed to rearrange the game as a precaution, and further testing will now take place tomorrow.
“The decision has been taken with the health of players and staff the priority.
“The Premier League continues to have full confidence in its protocols and rules, and the way in which all clubs are implementing them.”
But Everton have been left unhappy with the decision, and put out a strongly-worded statement later on Monday evening.
“Everton Football Club regret the postponement of tonight’s match against Manchester City – not only for the 2,000 fans who would have been attending, but for supporters on Merseyside and across the world,” they said.
“Our players were prepared for the game, as were both the team staff and everyone at Goodison. Matchday is the most important date in our calendar. And this was a big one.
“Whilst Everton will always have public safety uppermost, we will be requesting full disclosure of all the information that Manchester City provided to the Premier League so the club can be clear on why this decision was taken.”
Was it right to postpone the game? Have your say in the comments below
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