Manchester City vs Arsenal has been postponed amid concerns around the coronavirus.
The two Premier League giants were due to clash at the Etihad Stadium tonight, but the game will be moved back to a later date as a ‘precautionary measure’.
The move comes after Olympiacos owner Evangelos Marinakis was confirmed to have contracted the virus just weeks after meeting Arsenal players during their Europa League tie.
The 52-year-old is believed to have interacted with certain members of the Arsenal squad, some of whom have now been isolated, when they hosted the Gunners on February 20.
“The medical advice we have received puts the risk of them developing Covid-19 at extremely low,” Arsenal explained in their official statement.
Threat to Arsenal players ‘extremely low’
“However, we are strictly following the government guidelines which recommend that anyone coming into close contact with someone with the virus should self-isolate at home for 14 days from the last time they had contact.
“As a result, the players are unavailable for tonight’s match against Manchester City and the Premier League has decided the game should be postponed.
“The players will remain at their homes until the 14-day period expires. Four Arsenal staff, who were sitting close to Mr Marinakis during the match will also remain at home until the 14 days are complete.”
First game in England impacted
Marinakis is also the owner of Nottingham Forest and there are fears about the spread of Covid-19 after he was in attendance, along with thousands of fans, at their game with Millwall on Friday.
Nevertheless, Olympiacos’ Europa League tie against Wolverhampton Wanderers WILL go forward this week after UEFA denied a request for the round of 16 game to be postponed.
And while coronavirus has been affecting football matches overseas, this is the first case of a fixture on English shores being impacted.
The news also means that Liverpool will be unable to secure the Premier League title as early as this weekend, which could have been possible if City failed to pick up four points against Arsenal and Burnley.
According to the BBC, there are currently 382 cases in the UK and six people have sadly passed away.
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