Burton Albion told to play on despite Covid-19 outbreak

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Burton Albion have been told they must fulfill their league fixture against Hull City on Saturday despite having six players test positive for Coronavirus.

Along with the six players who tested positive a further six are also having to self-isolate due to being in contact with the positive players, five members of the staff have also returned positive tests.

Jake Buxton has revealed that Burton enquired to the EFL as to whether the fixture could be postponed but the EFL has said that they must play as the club had ‘followed all the Covid-19’ protocol.

The outbreak of coronavirus at the Pirelli Stadium won’t affect the Brewers’ trip to Hull City this weekend.

Buxton told the club website, “At the training ground and around the football club we are social distancing, wearing face masks and doing all the right things, but ultimately it was only a matter of time before it came into the group”.

The player, manager has admitted that missing so many players will be a challenge but has tried to inspire his team to play through adversity. He said, “I told the lads this has to galvanise us as a group.

“It’s tough when influential players are missing but that means there is an opportunity for others to step up”.

The Brewers will have enough players for the trip to the K-COM but they have had to recall several loan players and will be relying upon the academy to step-up.

Goalkeeper Callum Hawkins has had his time on loan at Mickleover cut short after successful period with the club and Tom Hewlett has also been recalled from Rushall.

The club performed their routine mass testing on Tuesday which is when the outbreak was discovered.

“I have spoken to all the players who have tested positive and they are all OK.

“They have mild headaches, some are more ill than others, but it’s more concerning about taking it home to their families”, said Buxton.

Albion played Fulham Under-21’s in the Pappa Johns Trophy on Tuesday night but none of the players who played in the penalty shoot-out victory tested positive.

Burton have only won one league game this season and sit 23rd in Sky Bet League One with the worst defensive record.

Their opponents Hull have had a good start to the season following their relegation from the Championship.

The Tigers sit comfortably in the play-off places and will be hoping to make a return to the second division of English football at the first time of asking.

Alongside the concerns surrounding coronavirus the Brewers could also be without captain John Brayford and Neal Eardley who both picked up knocks during Tuesday night’s game.

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