Newcastle’s game at Southampton off due to ongoing Covid cases and injuries | Football News

Southampton have contacted the Premier League to express their frustrations over the late postponement of the match against Newcastle.

On Friday afternoon, the Premier League confirmed that they had accepted Newcastle’s request to postpone the match on Sunday “as the club does not have the number of players available for the match (13 forward players and a goalkeeper)”.

It is Newcastle’s second consecutive game to be canceled after Thursday’s trip to Everton was also postponed due to the number of Covid-19 cases and injuries in Eddie Howe’s team.

On Monday, Newcastle were able to name just eight substitutes, including two goalkeepers, instead of the top nine for the 1-1 draw against Manchester United, with the squad sold out due to injuries and Covid-19 cases.

They also lost Allan Saint-Maximin, Callum Wilson and Ryan Fraser to injury to United.

But Southampton are dissatisfied with the current lack of transparency as to why matches are canceled and want full transparency in knowing which players are injured and how many squad members have Covid-19.

The Premier League insisted that “it aims to provide as much clarity as possible, but sadly sometimes postponements have to be made at short notice, as safety is our priority.”

What are the Premier League rules on postponements?

The 2021/22 Premier League handbook included Covid protocols and stated that the Premier League board of directors “will only allow the reorganization or postponement of a league game in exceptional circumstances.”

The board makes calls on a case-by-case basis and, as an indication, the Premier League says that authorization for a postponement will not be granted if a club has 14 or more players available on their roster.

However, following the postponement of a series of matches in the weeks leading up to Christmas, a new Premier League guide was released explaining match postponement protocols.

And there, these factors are taken into consideration when deciding whether to postpone a top-level match:

1) The impact of COVID-19 infections on a club’s squad, as well as injuries, illness and isolation, and the number of players available on the squad roster and any Under-21 players with appropriate experience. Where a club cannot field 13 outfield players and a goalkeeper either from its roster or from its suitably experienced Under-21 players, the match will be postponed.
2) The status of any COVID-19 outbreak within a club, including the number of people affected, the sequence and source of infections, and their proximity to the match in question.
3) The ability of a club to safely prepare its players for a match.
4) Medical advice on any unacceptable risk to the health and safety of players and staff during the course of the match.
5) Any advice from the UK Health Safety Agency and other public bodies.
6) Any other exceptional circumstance.

Which Premier League matches have been canceled?

Brighton-Tottenham – Sunday 12 December, Premier League

Brentford vs Man Utd – Tuesday 14 December, Premier League

Burnley v Watford – Wednesday 15 December, Premier League

Leicester vs Tottenham – Thursday 16 December, Premier League

Man Utd vs Brighton – Saturday 18 December, Premier League

Southampton vs Brentford – Saturday 18 December, Premier League

Watford vs Crystal Palace – Saturday 18 December, Premier League

West Ham vs Norwich – Saturday 18 December, Premier League

Aston Villa vs Burnley – Saturday 18 December, Premier League

Everton-Leicester – Sunday 19 December, Premier League

Liverpool-Leeds – Sunday 26 December, Premier League

Wolves versus Watford Sunday 26 December, Premier League

Burnley-Everton Sunday 26 December, Premier League

Leeds-Aston Villa – Tuesday 28 December, Premier League

Arsenal vs Lupi – Tuesday 28 December, Premier League

Everton vs Newcastle – Thursday 30 December, Premier League

Leicester vs Norwich – Saturday 1st January, Premier League

Southampton-Newcastle – Sunday 2 January, Premier League

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