Premier League records zero coronavirus cases for the first time since weekly testing began
There were no positive samples returned in last week’s Premier League Covid-19 testing.
The league announced on Monday afternoon that 2,787 players and club staff all returned negative results across two rounds of testing.
It is the first time the English top flight has recorded no positives, with the previous lowest figure being one, which was recorded in the consecutive weeks ending March 28 and April 4.
It is further good news in English football’s bid to get the game back on track after a difficult year of navigating coronavirus measures and the financial impact of playing in empty stadiums.
On Sunday 8,000 spectators were in attendance in the Carabao Cup final between Manchester City and Tottenham, a week after the FA Cup semi-final between Leicester and Southampton welcomed a mixture of 4,000 local residents and key workers to the national stadium.
Premier League chief executive Richard Masters said last month he hopes the final two fixtures of the season can see up to 10,000 fans in attendance, while earlier this month the FA said the plan was for 21,000 fans to attend the FA Cup final between Chelsea and Leicester at Wembley on May 15.
That total would be considerably beyond the 10,000 limit for larger outdoor seated venues set to come into force in step three of the road map on May 17.
‘Much better’ says Pep as 8,000 fans attend Carabao Cup final
There was no need for artificial crowd noise on Sky Sports on Sunday as Manchester City and Tottenham supporters made their voices heard at Wembley.
There were 2,000 supporters from both clubs inside the stadium, with a further 4,000 tickets split between groups including Brent residents and NHS staff.
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“It’s fantastic, it’s a joy to see them,” Sky Sports pundit Micah Richards said before kick-off. “And they deserve it, it’s been a long time coming, and hopefully we can give them a good game.”
City went on the win their fourth straight Carabao Cup, with Aymeric Laporte’s second-half header enough to separate the sides.
What a feeling to see some of the fans back and to lift another trophy in front of them! 🏆 pic.twitter.com/7K2pRhPxDJ
Asked about the return of supporters, Guardiola told Sky Sports: “It’s much better, it’s not full but it was enough. Good noise. Celebrating with them is much better.”
City captain Fernandinho added to Sky Sports: “We deserved to win that game. I’m really proud. We’re so happy to see them back in the stadium, congratulations for everyone.”
The Carabao Cup final was part of the UK Government’s Events Research Programme, which is using such events “to collect evidence and collate best practice for managing and mitigating transmission risk,” according to the EFL.
The World Snooker Championship at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield – which started last week and runs until May 3 – is also included in the trial.
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