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Covid-hit Chelsea ‘deeply disappointed’ after failing to have Wolves game postponed

By AFP
19 December 2021   |   1:25 pm
Chelsea said they were "deeply disappointed" after the Premier League rejected their request to postpone Sunday's match against Wolves due to a coronavirus outbreak in their squad.

Supporters show their Covid-19 documents to a steward before entering the ground for the English Premier League football match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Chelsea at the Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, central England on December 19, 2021. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP)

Chelsea said they were “deeply disappointed” after the Premier League rejected their request to postpone Sunday’s match against Wolves due to a coronavirus outbreak in their squad.

Thomas Tuchel’s side are already without Romelu Lukaku, Timo Werner and Callum Hudson-Odoi due to positive Covid-19 tests.

The Stamford Bridge club are understood to have lost more players to positive tests on Saturday, leaving the Londoners travelling to Wolverhampton with a makeshift squad for the 1400 GMT kick-off.

Ben Chilwell has been isolating due to a positive test, but was already sidelined with knee trouble.

Jorginho, Kai Havertz and Ruben Loftus-Cheek were not on Chelsea’s team bus on arrival at Molineux.

Tuchel had already admitted Chelsea could be pressed into starting Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante ahead of schedule on the midfield pair’s return from injury.

Kovacic only came out of isolation on Friday and has not played since October due to hamstring trouble, while Kante has not featured since November with a knee issue.

“We are deeply disappointed that our application was rejected as we felt we had a strong case for postponement of today’s match on the grounds of players’ health and safety,” said a Chelsea spokesman.

The European champions’ request is understood to have been rejected because the Blues were deemed to have had enough players to fulfil the fixture according to Premier League regulations.

Five of Saturday’s six Premier League fixtures were postponed, with Everton’s clash with Leicester on Sunday also called off.