Brentford boss on COVID surge: Stop Prem now

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Brentford boss Thomas Frank has called for the Premier League to postpone its latest round of fixtures as positive coronavirus cases mount up among players and staff.

Brentford recorded four more positive COVID-19 tests at the club on Thursday, Frank said, taking them to a total of 13 confirmed cases as the Premier League recorded its highest number of weekly cases since the pandemic began.

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A total of three Premier League matches have been postponed this month, including Manchester United‘s clash with Brentford on Tuesday and Burnley‘s match against Watford on Wednesday.

“We think we should postpone the full round of Premier League games this weekend,” Frank said in a news conference on Thursday.

“COIVD cases are going through the roof at all Premier League clubs, everyone is dealing with it and having problems.

“To postpone this round and also the Carabao Cup round would give everyone a week at least, or four or five days to clean and do everything at the training ground so everything is clean and you break the chain.

“Also in football, you need close contact. Physios need to do their job with players in treatment. We are in dressing room on matchdays, we are travelling by coaches so it’s a little bit more difficult to work from home.”

The Premier League has reported 42 positive cases across the league — a record high since records began — with the new Omicron variant surging in the United Kingdom. The league said they are reverting to its emergency measures for all teams, which includes increased testing of players and staff.

The league also introduced stricter measures around matchdays, requiring fans to wear a mask inside stadiums, show a COVID-19 status declaration prior to matchday as well as proof of a vaccination or a negative test result.

The Premier League continues on Thursday with three matches scheduled to be played, with Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur all in action.

“We fully respect that we want to play and it is important football keeps going, and this way we can make sure Boxing Day keeps going, I’m 100% sure of that,” Frank added.

“This Omicron variant is running like wildfire around the world and I think we need to do all we can to protect and avoid it. I think we can do a lot by closing down training grounds for three, four or five days, and then we can go again.”

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