Strict Conditions For Training To Resume Next Week
Tuesday, 12th May 2020 21:03
When Premier League clubs get their squads back together at the training grounds next week, there will be unprecedented precautions in place and a date has been set for the season to potentially resume read on for more details.
The BBC has revealed some of the conditions and precautions that will be put in place when the Premier League squads reconvene in preparation for the competition restarting in June.
Tackling will be banned, pitches disinfected and players restricted to groups of five when the Premier League starts a first phase of team training with strict social distancing being maintained..
Corner-flags, balls, cones, goalposts and even playing surfaces will be disinfected after each session, which hopefully will be restarted next week with a time limit of 75 minutes per session.
Ongoing surveillance measures included in further guidance include twice-weekly testing, and a daily pre-training questionnaire and temperature check.
Under a section titled 'health screening', players are also told a central register of Covid-19 test results (subject to their consent and Professional Footballers' Association agreement) will need to be maintained.
Recommended "control measures" include "meticulous personal hygiene and use of PPE [personal protective equipment], no congregation in communal areas, including but not limited to medical rooms and gym areas".
Under further stringent rules, players are told they cannot share transport with anyone to and from the training ground, and vehicle interiors should be cleaned regularly. Team vehicles and public transport should not be used.
Players are being consulted on proposed medical protocols for a return to training by the PFA. They have been given a condensed version of a 40-page document for them to digest.
The BBC has also claimed that the PFA has heard from a number of players, especially those who have underlying health conditions like asthma or who are from black and minority ethnic (Bame) backgrounds, that they have real concerns about returning to playing.
Black men and women are nearly twice as likely to die with coronavirus as white people in England and Wales, according to the Office for National Statistics.
The draft protocols refer to "additional risk assessment and precautions required for players at increased risk (co-morbidity)".
On Wednesday, there will be a meeting between players, the Premier League, medical staff and the PFA.
Government approval will need to be granted before teams can continue to the next stage of training, when contact would be permitted.
The timeline for a return to football is as follow
Wednesday, 13 May: Professional Footballers' Association/League Managers' Association consult members on medical protocols
Thursday, 14 May: Meetings between Premier League and PFA/LMA about medical protocols
Thursday, 14 May: Meeting between Culture Secretary and football authorities
Monday, 18 May: Next Premier League meeting
Monday, 18 May: Premier League players may return to initial group training under socially distancing protocols
25 May: Uefa deadline for leagues to have finalised plan for restarting seasons
1 June: Government date for possible return of elite sport behind closed doors in England
12 June: Premier League aiming to return with first fixture
Photo: Action Images
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