Arsenal have released an official club statement, stating that Head Coach Mikel Arteta has tested positive for Coronavirus.
The statement says that Arteta took the test recently after feeling poorly. The Spaniard is disappointed but is now in self-isolation, and the statement then went further in detailing the methods being used to cut short the virus being contracted further by more of our staff and players.
This may be difficult, as Arteta will have been in close contact with his first team squad, his coaching staff and those at Hale End Academy. The facilities at Colney and Hale End are being deep cleaned and those above who are believed to have been in close contact with Arteta will also go into self-isolation to quickly eradicate this virus from our club.
Managing Director Vinai Venkatesham said “The health of our people and the wider public is our priority and that is where our focus is. Our thoughts are with Mikel who is disappointed but in good spirits. We are in active dialogue with all the relevant people to manage this situation appropriately, and we look forward to getting back in training and playing as soon as medical advice allows.”
As things stand, our match versus Brighton this weekend, as well as all the Premier League weekend fixtures are scheduled to go ahead. This looks to be an untenable situation, at least for Arsenal. It is merely days away and with our Head Coach and likely the majority of our first team in isolation, can we hope to prepare for this game?
In all likelihood, the match will be postponed. Leicester City have released information stating they have three players in their first team who have contracted Covid-19, so to be without first team players means an unfair advantage for their opponents.
This weekend has already been shorn of a number of rugby and European football fixtures, and the seasons opening F1 Australian Grand Prix has also been postponed. As things stand, the Premier League will carry on, but expect this to change rapidly.
We’ll keep you posted. Best wishes to our Head Coach and all at Arsenal Football Club.