Tottenham’s final home game of 2020 has been called off less than four hours before kick-off due to a number of positive Covid-19 cases at Fulham, plunging the Premier League into even more chaos.
Spurs boss Jose Mourinho showed a video inside the stadium minutes before the announcement of the postponement was made where he revealed the confusion of him and his coaching staff as to whether the match had been abandoned.
Mourinho sarcastically mocked the ‘Best league in the world’ tag on his Instagram by revealing he and his Tottenham players had no idea if they were to play Fulham by 2pm on Wednesday when they were already at the stadium.
Eventually the Premier League granted Fulham’s request to postpone the match following an emergency meeting.
Accompanying the video, Mourinho sarcastically captioned the video: ‘Match at 6pm… We still don’t know if we play. Best league in the world.’
It is only the third top-flight game this season to be postponed due to the virus.
Tottenham’s players and staff were sat waiting inside the stadium before a decision was made to call off a second Premier League game this week after Manchester City’s trip to Everton was abandoned on Monday.
As revealed by the Athletic on Tuesday, a number of people associated with Fulham have tested positive for the virus and as such the game has been placed in doubt.
Fulham are reported to have made the request to the Premier League to have Wednesday’s game postponed and there are now further doubts about the ability to continue hosting matches with a number of teams revealing outbreaks in their bubbles.
Fulham boss Scott Parker was due return to the dugout for the game following the completion a 10-day self-isolation period after a member of his household tested positive for Covid-19.
PREMIER LEAGUE COVID-19 TEST RESULTS FOR 2020-21 SEASON
Round 1: Aug 31-Sep 6 – 1,605 tested, with three testing positive.
Round 2: Sep 7-13 – 2,131 tested, with four testing positive.
Round 3: Sep 14-20- 1,574 tested, with three testing positive.
Round 4: Sep 21-27 – 1,595 tested, with 10 testing positive.
Round 5: Sep 28-Oct 4 – 1,587 tested, with nine testing positive.
Round 6: Oct 5-11 – 1,128 tested, with five testing positive.
Round 7: Oct 12-18 – 1,575 tested, with eight testing positive.
Round 8: Oct 19-25 – 1,609 tested, with two testing positive.
Round 9: Oct 26-Nov 1 – 1,446 tested, with four testing positive.
Round 10: Nov 2-8 – 1,646 tested, with four testing positive.
Round 11: Nov 9-15 – 1,207 tested, with 16 testing positive.
Round 12: Nov 16-22 – 1,530 tested, with eight testing positive.
Round 13: Nov 23-29 – 1,381 tested, with 10 testing positive.
Round 14: Nov 30-Dec 6 – 1,483 tested, with 14 testing positive.
Round 15: Dec 7-13 – 1,549 tested, with six testing positive.
Round 16: Dec 14-20 – 1,569 tested, with seven testing positive
Round 17: Dec 21-27 – 1,479 tested, with 18 testing positive.
On Tuesday the Premier League confirmed that there are 18 new positive Covid-19 tests among players and staff, the highest weekly total since Project Restart.
The latest round of testing saw 1,479 players and staff tested and the results show a sharp increase on last week’s total.
Manchester City’s trip to Everton on Monday was cancelled just hours before kick-off, a decision which left the Merseyside club furious and demanding a full explanation.
It was the second game to be postponed due to Covid-19 after Newcastle’s visit to Aston Villa at the start of the December was called off.
Everton were furious as they wanted to play and had started pre-match preparations at the Hilton Hotel in Liverpool, their usual base.
Premier League rules state that matches should go ahead if a club has 14 available players, including a goalkeeper, although decisions are taken on a case-by-case basis and dependant on circumstances — particularly in relation to the pandemic.
But the league can take the precautionary measure of postponing the fixture if they believe that players and staff are at an increased risk of catching the virus.
On Tuesday, the United Kingdom posted its highest daily rate of infections since the pandemic began in March – with 53,135.
The previous highest number of cases in one round of Premier League testing this season was 16, during the week of November 9-15.
A Premier League statement read: ‘The Premier League can today confirm that between Monday 21 December and Sunday 27 December, 1,479 players and club staff were tested for Covid-19. Of these, there were 18 new positive tests.
‘Players or club staff who have tested positive will self-isolate for a period of 10 days.’