The Premier League insists that it has no plans to interrupt the planned 2021-22 fixture schedule in spite of the new outbreak of COVID-19 that has hit the United Kingdom this winter.
Football has not escaped the general growth in new cases, with six games falling victim to the pandemic at the weekend.
But while a COVID ‘circuit-breaker’ had been mentioned as a potential option for the league, fixtures will not be cancelled unless absolutely necessary.
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“It was confirmed at a Premier League club meeting today that while recognizing a number of clubs are experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and challenges, it is the league’s collective intention to continue the current fixture schedule where safely possible,” the Premier League affirmed in a statement published on its official website on Monday.
“The health and wellbeing of all concerned remains our priority and the League will continue to monitor and reflect public health guidance, always proceeding with caution.”
Premier League vaccination rate
The Premier League also revealed that uptake on COVID-19 vaccines has been higher among footballers than the general population in the same age group, and that those numbers will be published on a regular basis from now on.
“A range of issues were discussed at this afternoon’s meeting, including the adaption of the Premier League COVID-19 postponement process in response to the impact of the Omicron variant,” the statement continued.
“The League also confirmed to its clubs today that 92 per cent of players and club staff have received one, two or three COVID-19 vaccination doses, with 84 per cent of players on the vaccination journey.
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“Players who have had one or two doses are required to wait for the appropriate time period before receiving either their second or booster vaccinations.
“The league continues to work with clubs to encourage vaccination among players and club staff, as well as promoting the government’s public-health vaccination messaging to clubs and the wider public.
“No specific details as to clubs or individuals will be provided by the League, and player vaccination rates will now be publicly communicated at the end of each month, beginning in January.”