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Swansea City training with minimal numbers as Covid-19 positive tests rip through the squad
Sunday, 2nd Jan 2022 06:01 by Gruff Stephens

Swansea City are down to the bare bones this weekend which shows just how bad the recent Covid positive tests have affected the squad. The swans haven’t played since December 11th, which we can now say was officially last year.

And that was twenty two days ago.

Much more concerning is the football League have put in place tricky protocols which mean players isolating or in a form of recovery, and obviously those with negative tests cannot mix or train together. It’s not a slight against the EFL, it make sense that these rules are there. But this last week the swans have had only a maximum of twelve players in training which means match day strategy and options to work on set pieces and walk through moves is virtually impossible. Twelve isn’t even sufficient to fulfil a match day fixture. We have been told that “Players are just doing general fitness work, it’s been good for a number of them as they are extremely well conditioned, but the issue is the way Russell Martin trains the team each day has been seriously affected”

Saturdays game against Southampton in the FA Cup if it were to go ahead today would be postponed. The swans will be given until testing on Friday to call the game off or confirm it will go ahead.Of course if the club return more positive tests in the week the game could be off before then. And of course Southampton are in the mix as well.

A change in the testing regime
An EFL spokesperson said on New Years Eve.: “Over the past week, it has become clear that the requirement for matchday testing has caused significant concern and uncertainty at clubs as well as seriously affecting the supporters of those teams. As a result, the League revisited the matter with its Medical Advisors and after careful consideration, which included dialogue with a significant number of club Doctors, it was determined that the requirement for matchday testing would be removed, except for those individuals who display COVID symptoms. Daily testing will continue on non-matchdays with Clubs following the updated red protocols which remain our biggest protection against the transmission of COVID in a footballing environment as we collectively look to navigate our way through these challenging and unprecedented times.” The most recent example of a game being called off late in the day saw Blackburn Rovers' trip to Hull City cancelled barely two hours before kick-off.

At least common sense is prevailing, the fact now supporters who travel to games, and as we know not behind comes from the town or city a club represents. Around 27% of swans fans travel from from outside of the city the last time figures were released based on season ticket sales.

The majority of Swansea City supporters would like the option to go to games as opposed to a blanket ban on crowds at sporting fixtures in Wales. A change of mindset and matching regulations with England would at least see a more level playing field in the EFL.

Artwork Swansea Independent



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