Premier League giants Chelsea will not play out their planned friendly meeting with Drogheda United on Thursday evening, it has been confirmed.
Pre-season preparations across the English top-flight, to date, have of course proven something of a mess.
The chief reason for this, inevitably, has been Covid-19.
First, this day last week, it was confirmed that Arsenal’s London Colney training ground had been hit by an outbreak, forcing the club into a shutdown to allow for a deep clean.
The Gunners’ annual pre-season trip to the United States, in turn, was cancelled on Tuesday, following a ‘small number’ of positive tests among Mikel Arteta’s squad:
Following a small number of positive COVID tests among the planned party to travel to America tomorrow, we have sadly been forced to withdraw from the Florida Cup.
This difficult decision is based on ensuring the health and wellbeing of our players and staff.
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) July 20, 2021
Leicester City, meanwhile, have too faced issues of late, amid a ‘logistical nightmare’ in attempting to reintegrate the host of Foxes stars returning from international duty.
And Manchester City joined the club earlier today, after seeing their scheduled pre-season friendly showdown with French outfit Troyes cancelled on the back of an update to the quarantine rules for those returning to the UK from France:
Manchester City are disappointed to confirm that our planned pre-season friendly at fellow CFG club ES Troyes AC has been cancelled.
Read more ⬇️
— Manchester City (@ManCity) July 21, 2021
As outlined above, though, the nightmare that has proven the Premier League pre-season landscape has, on Thursday evening, continued to worsen.
As confirmed by a host of sources across social media, Chelsea have seen their meeting with Irish outfit Drogheda United, scheduled to get underway in less than an hour’s time, called off at the last minute.
An exact explanation for the decision has not yet been provided.
According to football.london, Thomas Tuchel’s squad, who have been ramping up their preparations on the outskirts of Dublin for the last two days, will instead carry out an extra training session over the coming hours.
Breaking news this evening. https://t.co/sIqdlsBoaR
— Chelsea FC News (@Chelsea_FL) July 22, 2021
*Update* – Chelsea have since released a statement, confirming a ‘possible positive Covid case’ in the club’s ranks:
Statement from #CFC on the cancelled friendly vs Drogheda: “Earlier today, we had a possible positive Covid case which we are investigating. The individual has been isolated from the rest of the group.We also decided, as a precaution, to cancel tonight’s behind closed doors game”
— Sam Inkersole (@Sam_InkersoleTM) July 22, 2021
This article was edited by Josh Barker.
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