Ever since Mikel Arteta contracted the coronavirus after being in contact with the Olympiakos owner Evangelos Marinakis, our coach and all the Arsenal players have been in the government-recommended two-week self isolation.
That period has now ended and with movement not being totally restricted it was thought that the players would return to training today, safe in the knowledge that they are not carriers, but the club has instead decided that it would be “irresponsible” for them to return at this time.
They released an update on Arsenal.com, that stated: “Our men’s first-team players were scheduled to return to training on Tuesday (March 24) after completing 14-days isolation following Mikel Arteta’s positive diagnosis for the virus.
“As a result of the current situation, we are clear it would be inappropriate and irresponsible to ask players to come back at this time. Therefore our men’s first team, women and academy players are all remaining at home.”
This is not good for the fitness of our Arsenal players, or for any other team for that matter, and with the Premier League being suspended until at least 30th April it is going to be extremely difficult for the Players to keep their fitness up to resume playing as soon as the suspension is lifted. To be hones, I’ve only been in lockdown for 9 days now, but there is little to do but eat, write and watch TV so I can already feel the effect on my (already weak) body. Our players must be feeling it even more after being used to running about on the training ground every day.
So, even if they can return to training at the end of April, surely Arteta will need a couple of weeks to get his players back into shape before risking injury through fatigue in a competitive game.
Does anyone still believe we can finish all our League games by June 30th?