GAME OFF: City cancel Coventry friendly due to Covid-19 concerns
- Credit: Ian Burt
Norwich City have cancelled tonight’s friendly against Coventry City as a 'precautionary measure' after further positive Covid-19 test results.
Angus Gunn and Jacob Sorensen missed Friday’s 2-0 friendly win over Huddersfield at Colney as they began a spell of self-isolation following positives tests for the virus.
City were believed to be basing themselves at a hotel in Yorkshire this week ahead of the game against the Sky Blues, which was due to be played in Chesterfield as a 6pm kick-off.
However, the Canaries are set to return to the Lotus Training Centre to continue their pre-season preparations at Colney rather than take any risks of spreading the infection, as regular testing continues.
"Norwich City’s scheduled pre-season fixture against Coventry City has been cancelled," explains a club statement.
"The decision was made as a precautionary measure following a small number of positive Covid-19 test results within City’s first-team group.
"The club’s players and staff will continue to follow Premier League protocols and government guidelines, operating and training in their respective first-team bubble at the Lotus Training Centre.
"City’s next scheduled pre-season fixture is against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Saturday, July 31. The game kicks off at 3pm.
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"Those supporters who have purchased a match streaming pass for the Coventry City fixture will automatically be issued a refund."
The names of the latest players or staff to test positive have not been released by the Canaries.
Coventry also released a statement confirming the cancellation, concluding: "We wish Norwich City and their squad all of the best for the season ahead."
Tickets for the friendly at Sheffield United have already gone on sale to home and away fans ahead of the Bramall Lane fixture.
City’s cancellation comes less than three weeks before Daniel Farke’s squad are due to begin their Premier League campaign against Liverpool at Carrow Road on Saturday, August 14.
The Norwich players were pictured online enjoying team-bonding activities at the weekend, taking sports cars for a spin at the Norfolk headquarters of shirt sponsor Lotus and enjoying some karaoke at a restaurant in Thorpe St Andrew - activities which are allowed following the relaxation of government coronavirus restrictions earlier this month.
Pre-season is scheduled to continue on Tuesday when fans return to Carrow Road for a friendly against League One side Gillingham, followed by a final friendly against Premier League rivals Newcastle on Saturday, August 7, planned as a 2pm kick-off at St James’ Park.
Tonight's game was due to be played behind closed doors but was going to be broadcast live via an online stream on City's website, with access costing £10. The same system is planned for Saturday.
The Canaries began pre-season with a 3-1 win at King's Lynn Town in front of around 1,600 spectators on Friday, July 16.
That was followed by two Colney games behind closed doors, beating Lincoln City 1-0 last Tuesday ahead of the 2-0 win over Huddersfield on Friday.