City squad can expect long term disruption due to Covid impact

Bali Mumba is among four players to have tested positive for coronavirus at Norwich City in the past two weeks.

Bali Mumba is among four players to have tested positive for coronavirus at Norwich City in the past two weeks. - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Limited

Daniel Farke insists Norwich City must endure the ‘new normal’ for months after nine players and backroom staff tested positive for coronavirus. 

Tim Krul and Adam Idah have just emerged from self-isolation but Xavi Quintilla and Bali Mumba have now tested positive in recent days. 

Farke confirmed on Friday all four are unavailable for the Championship trip to Cardiff, along with five support staff, while Lukas Rupp and Josh Martin have stayed behind with flu like symptoms but so far have tested negative. 

The City chief is resigned to more positive tests in the weeks ahead. 

“We are probably in the worst period of this pandemic, in terms of numbers, and I expect January, February and March will be tricky until the weather gets better and the vaccine starts to work," he said. “We will still have eight to 10 difficult weeks and we have to adapt to a situation where more or less from game to game we will have players unavailable due to corona.

"If we go further on playing games this is going to happen so we have to get used to it.  

“Of course as a coach it is a worry but my bigger worry is towards the health of human beings. It will be the same for each club and they will struggle during these times.

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"We just have to come through it as well as we can and as healthy as possible. 

“We have to stay calm and realistic. Football reflects society and if there are so many cases sadly in society it would be a miracle if that was not reflected in football. We are all human beings. 

"Of course it is a worry for a player and not easy to just focus on the football.

"You are waiting for results and then you get positive cases of team mates who were involved in training sessions, or you think about how much time they spent with them indoors.” 

The Football League and other key stakeholders have now rolled out mandatory twice-weekly testing for every club. 

“I am happy to have testing twice a week and we did it three times this past week. That is our plan. I would rather know about cases,” said Farke. “This is the new normal. We have four players missing and five members of our backroom staff this weekend.

"Not the coaching staff itself, but one physio and four sports scientists working closely with the team.

"It doesn’t help but I don’t differ between the players and the backroom staff. We are all one team here. We want them to return safely.

"It looks like the symptoms for the backroom staff are not too bad but they will all have to isolate for 10 days." 

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