Football

Jamie Carragher: EPL training grounds are safe

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher insisted that English Premier League training grounds are safe after some players expressed reservations about returning to training.

Clubs resumed "small-group" training from Tuesday, when the EPL announced that six people from three clubs had tested positive for Covid-19 out of a sample of 748 individuals.

Three of the six come from Watford, where defender Adrian Mariappa and two staff members tested positive. Burnley assistant manager Ian Woan was another positive case, but was asymptomatic like Mariappa.

Those who tested positive have to self-isolate for seven days.

Watford captain Troy Deeney has said he would not return to training as he has a five-year-old son who has breathing difficulties. He also highlighted research that black people are four times more likely to die from Covid-19 as compared to their white counterparts in Britain.

The Athletic reported that more Hornets players will follow Deeney's lead.

The EPL's medical adviser Mark Gillett said: "It's a fair thing to acknowledge that there is an increased risk in Bame (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) groups.

"In mitigation of that, the risk in young fit athletes is still very, very small and I think that is an important factor."

Newcastle United's on-loan left-back Danny Rose also expressed his reticence to return to training, saying: "I could be potentially risking my health for people's entertainment and that's not something I want to be involved in."

Carragher, however, said on Sky Sports: "The training grounds are safe. Players who tested positive have picked it up outside.

"I would get confidence as a Watford player going back to training, knowing that the people who have got it are self-isolating... I would as a player feel confident going back if I was at Watford."

Like Carragher, former Crystal Palace owner Simon Jordan respects Deeney's views, but disagreed with his stance, telling talkSPORT: "To go straight of the gate and say, 'No, under no circumstances, irrespective of what you do, I'm not coming back', it seems wrong to me."

Football