Portsmouth chief outlines 'serious concerns' if football was suspended amid League One crisis

Portsmouth chief executive Mark Catlin has outlined his ‘serious concerns’ if football was to be suspended amid the League One Covid-19 crisis.

Sunday, 27th December 2020, 12:00 pm

Six clubs – including Sunderland, Portsmouth, Ipswich Town, Peterborough United, Bristol Rovers and Hull City – have postponed games over the festive break due to outbreaks at their respective clubs.

Sunderland postponed three games and were due back in training on Sunday ahead of the Tuesday night trip to Accrington Stanley.

Last week Ipswich Town physio Matt Byard confirmed their Covid-19 outbreak was the variant strain of the disease – and has called for a football ‘circuit breaker’.

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A general view of the Portman Road stadium.

But the Pompey boss says he would have serious reservations about that course of action.

As things stand and as previously reported the EFL is planning to carry on as normal with the fixture list.

Catlin told The News said: “I have read many say that we need a circuit break more generally, but I would have serious concerns.

“Football isn’t immune from this virus. It goes hand in hand with and is a microcosm of society.

“My concern would be if we had a circuit break of two-to-four weeks and spent time with our families over Christmas, do we think the situation is going to change in society over that period?

“My concern would be we’re missing time where clubs who fortunately haven’t been affected can continue to play games.

“If we have a circuit breaker and push the season down the line more generally, what is realistically going to change which makes us think we’ll be safe to come back into two to four weeks?

“I don’t understand what is going to change."

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