West Ham have eight players in self-isolation showing mild symptoms of coronavirus, according to the club’s vice-chair, Karren Brady.
In her weekly column in The Sun, Brady wrote: “I am relieved to say they are all showing mild symptoms and, along with their families, seem to be well. But it is no more than a handshake, sneeze or cough away from any of us, so no one should be complacent.”
The West Ham squad have fitness programmes to do at home, with the current plan being for them to resume training on 13 April. The projected restart date for the season is still 30 April, although that target appears increasingly unlikely.
The Premier League, Football League and PFA met on Friday to discuss the economic implications of suspending the season, with further talks planned for next week.
“When we, all Premier League clubs, last spoke, we agreed to get going again as soon as possible,” said Brady. “And that games will run in to July, if required, to get this campaign finished. This is the plan. This is what we want to deliver.
“It may be games have to be played behind closed doors, which no one wants, especially the players and fans,” Brady added. “But we hope it might just be possible to go ahead once the sharp graph of it bottoms out.”
Pedro separated from his children by lockdown
The Chelsea winger Pedro has opened up on living apart from his children, with the 32-year-old unable to return to Spain during the coronavirus shutdown. “It’s hard not to be seeing your children, your parents, your siblings, not having them close by at a complicated, difficult time for us all,” Pedro told the Chelsea website.
“We are in permanent contact on the phone, keeping in touch about what we are up to in isolation. Of course, we would have liked to be there but for safety reasons that isn’t possible, so for now we are going to try to get through it as best we can.”
“They are in total lockdown [in Spain] so they are living through a crisis situation,” Pedro added. “The police and army are on the streets and the situation is maybe more controlled than here in the UK, but we are living in a situation of chaos and crisis.
“I’ve been on the phone to Kepa and Marcos Alonso. I’ve also called Jordi Alba from Barcelona, and Azpi (César Azpilicueta). I’m in touch with other players, too, to see how they are handling the situation, with players who are alone.”
Pedro is helping the community effort in Spain through his own foundation, while the Chelsea squad has made a sizeable donation to help those in need in west London. The club’s owner, Roman Abramovich, has turned Stamford Bridge’s Millennium Hotel over to NHS staff and is footing the bill.