Premier League reports drop in coronavirus cases for second straight week

The number of positive coronavirus tests in the Premier League has fallen for the second week in a row.

A total of 72 new cases were recorded in the latest round of testing from January 3-9 – down from 94 in the previous figures, which had fallen from 103 the week before.

A Premier League statement on Monday read: “The Premier League can today confirm that between Monday 3 January and Sunday 9 January, 12,973 Covid-19 tests were administered on players and club staff. Of these, there were 72 new positive cases.

“This is the second week in a row the number of positive results have decreased.”

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The results offer some welcome news after the top-flight festive programme was severely disrupted by postponements as clubs requested games be called off with Covid-19 cases and injuries mounting.

However, some Premier League squads continue to be stretched – with international duty for those players away at the Africa Cup of Nations also now impacting on numbers available.

It was announced on Sunday that Leicester’s trip to Everton scheduled for Tuesday, had been postponed for a second time after the Foxes successfully applied to the Premier League to have the match rearranged.

Despite fielding a side strong enough to beat Watford 4-1 in their FA Cup third-round tie at home to Watford on Saturday – a competition in which different rules apply – Leicester said coronavirus cases, injuries and the Africa Cup of Nations had left them short.

The Premier League assesses applications for postponements on a case-by-case basis taking into a number of factors, including the ability of a club to field a team; the status, severity and potential impact of the Covid-19 outbreak at the club; and the ability of the players to safely prepare for and play the match.

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