Villa game falls victim to Covid outbreak

27 Dec 2021 12:15 am, by YorkshireSquare

Leeds United have confirmed their next home Premier League game against Aston Villa on Tuesday 28th December 2021 has been postponed. Whilst there have been no new Covid-19 cases in the playing squad, the majority of the players who tested positive prior to the Liverpool game are not yet out of isolation. Therefore, Leeds still do not have enough recognised first-team players to meet the Premier League requirements for the fixture. All tickets purchased for the Aston Villa game will be valid for the rearranged date, further details will be announced by the club in due course.

The Boxing Day fixture against Liverpool had already been a casualty, with five of the playing staff having returned positive Covid tests the week prior. The clubs Thorp Arch training complex was closed for two days from 23rd December, at the recommendation of the UK Health Security Agency and the Premier League, as a result and there was no training session as usual on Christmas Day as the club attempted to manage the Covid-19 cases affecting first-team players and staff.

Despite the closedown, special dispensation was given to Leeds for their injured players to attend the training ground for treatment. With the Villa game now also postponed there may be the prospect of some players recovering in time for their next games against Burnley on the 2nd January in the Premier League and West Ham on 9th January in the FA Cup third round. The January break may also provide a chance for the Premier League to catch up on some of the postponed fixtures.

Villa have also been struggling with their own Covid-19 problems and had to cancel last weekend's match with Burnley just hours before kick-off after more players returned positive tests. Steven Gerrard also missed Villa’s 3-1 defeat to Chelsea on Boxing Day having returned a positive test over Christmas.