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Championship

Blackburn’s Bennett, two Fulham players test positive

Bennett: "It's not a big deal at all. It's the people who are seriously ill in hospital that we need to worry about, not footballers who are fit and healthy."

Last Updated: 28/05/20 1:09pm

Elliott Bennett says he feels 'fit and healthy' despite testing positive for coronavirus

Elliott Bennett says he feels 'fit and healthy' despite testing positive for coronavirus

Blackburn midfielder Elliott Bennett and two unnamed Fulham players have tested positive for coronavirus.

Bennett, 31, is asymptomatic and feeling no ill effects. Blackburn have confirmed Bennett will now self-isolate at home for the next seven days and provided he develops no symptoms, will return to training with his Rovers team-mates on Friday June 5.

Blackburn have also confirmed the players and coaching staff who were in the same group as Bennett for Monday's small group training session have subsequently been re-tested and have again provided negative results.

In a statement, Bennett said: "I feel fit and healthy. Hopefully this sends out a positive message to the community that perhaps many people have or have had the virus without showing any effects.

"I obviously would never have known if we hadn't returned to training and taken the tests, because I don't feel unwell and have got no symptoms whatsoever.

"There seems to have been a lot of hysteria about footballers returning to training, but it's not a big deal at all. It's the people who are seriously ill in hospital that we need to worry about, not footballers who are fit and healthy, and who aren't showing any signs of being unwell."

In their latest round of testing, the EFL says 1,030 players and club staff were tested over the course of Monday 25, Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 May.

Two unnamed Fulham players have also tested positive and will now self-isolate for seven days

Two unnamed Fulham players have also tested positive and will now self-isolate for seven days

Two individuals from Hull tested positive following the first round of coronavirus testing in the Championship, but the club confirmed none of their players or staff were included in the three new positive tests.

Those players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate in line with the guidelines provided by the EFL and only those who have tested negative will be permitted to enter training ground facilities.

In a statement, Fulham said: "After the second round of league-wide testing for COVID-19 completed by Fulham FC players and staff this week at the Club's training facility, we can confirm that two players have tested positive for Coronavirus.

"Both players, who shall remain unnamed due to medical confidentiality, are now self-isolating in line with league and government guidance."

The EFL outlined last Friday they would adopt a "flexible approach" in their finalised Return to Training Protocols (RTT), including the option for players to self-test for coronavirus.

Players and staff will be required to complete a daily medical questionnaire submitted before arrival at the training ground on training days, with access denied if this is not submitted before arrival.

The Premier League revealed four more people had tested positive after their third round of coronavirus testing on Monday and Tuesday.

There is currently no testing programme for League One clubs, with their season set to be decided on unweighted points-per-game.

League Two clubs have already "unanimously indicated" they wish to end their season, but the EFL board has described maintaining relegation as "integral" to preserving the competition's "integrity".

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This news item was provided by the
SkySports | News website - the original link is: https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11688/11995421/blackburns-elliott-bennett-and-two-fulham-players-test-positive-for-coronavirus

Blackburn’s Bennett, two Fulham players test positive

Bennett: "It's not a big deal at all. It's the people who are seriously ill in hospital that we need to worry about, not footballers who are fit and healthy."

Last Updated: 28/05/20 1:09pm

Elliott Bennett says he feels 'fit and healthy' despite testing positive for coronavirus

Elliott Bennett says he feels 'fit and healthy' despite testing positive for coronavirus

Blackburn midfielder Elliott Bennett and two unnamed Fulham players have tested positive for coronavirus.

Bennett, 31, is asymptomatic and feeling no ill effects. Blackburn have confirmed Bennett will now self-isolate at home for the next seven days and provided he develops no symptoms, will return to training with his Rovers team-mates on Friday June 5.

Blackburn have also confirmed the players and coaching staff who were in the same group as Bennett for Monday's small group training session have subsequently been re-tested and have again provided negative results.

In a statement, Bennett said: "I feel fit and healthy. Hopefully this sends out a positive message to the community that perhaps many people have or have had the virus without showing any effects.

"I obviously would never have known if we hadn't returned to training and taken the tests, because I don't feel unwell and have got no symptoms whatsoever.

"There seems to have been a lot of hysteria about footballers returning to training, but it's not a big deal at all. It's the people who are seriously ill in hospital that we need to worry about, not footballers who are fit and healthy, and who aren't showing any signs of being unwell."

In their latest round of testing, the EFL says 1,030 players and club staff were tested over the course of Monday 25, Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 May.

Two unnamed Fulham players have also tested positive and will now self-isolate for seven days

Two unnamed Fulham players have also tested positive and will now self-isolate for seven days

Two individuals from Hull tested positive following the first round of coronavirus testing in the Championship, but the club confirmed none of their players or staff were included in the three new positive tests.

Those players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate in line with the guidelines provided by the EFL and only those who have tested negative will be permitted to enter training ground facilities.

In a statement, Fulham said: "After the second round of league-wide testing for COVID-19 completed by Fulham FC players and staff this week at the Club's training facility, we can confirm that two players have tested positive for Coronavirus.

"Both players, who shall remain unnamed due to medical confidentiality, are now self-isolating in line with league and government guidance."

The EFL outlined last Friday they would adopt a "flexible approach" in their finalised Return to Training Protocols (RTT), including the option for players to self-test for coronavirus.

Players and staff will be required to complete a daily medical questionnaire submitted before arrival at the training ground on training days, with access denied if this is not submitted before arrival.

The Premier League revealed four more people had tested positive after their third round of coronavirus testing on Monday and Tuesday.

There is currently no testing programme for League One clubs, with their season set to be decided on unweighted points-per-game.

League Two clubs have already "unanimously indicated" they wish to end their season, but the EFL board has described maintaining relegation as "integral" to preserving the competition's "integrity".

Win £50k with Super 6!

Do not miss your chance to land the £50,000 jackpot on Saturday. Play for free, entries by 2:30pm.


This news item was provided by the
SkySports | News website - the original link is: https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11688/11995421/blackburns-elliott-bennett-and-two-fulham-players-test-positive-for-coronavirus

Two Fulham players among three positive tests in EFL

A total of five positive cases have been confirmed in the EFL; Two individuals at Hull City tested positive after first round but not included in latest figures

Last Updated: 28/05/20 12:02pm

Two Fulham players are among three positive tests following the EFL's latest round of coronavirus testing.

A third positive test is from a separate club. The EFL says 1,030 players and club staff have been tested over the course of Monday 25, Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 May.

Two individuals from Hull tested positive following the first round of coronavirus testing in the Championship, but the club say none of their players or staff are included in the three new positive tests.

Those players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate in line with the guidelines provided by the EFL and only those who have tested negative will be permitted to enter training ground facilities.

In a statement, Fulham said: "After the second round of league-wide testing for COVID-19 completed by Fulham FC players and staff this week at the Club's training facility, we can confirm that two players have tested positive for Coronavirus.

"Both players, who shall remain unnamed due to medical confidentiality, are now self-isolating in line with league and government guidance."

The EFL outlined last Friday they would adopt a "flexible approach" in their finalised Return to Training Protocols (RTT), including the option for players to self-test for coronavirus.

Players and staff will be required to complete a daily medical questionnaire submitted before arrival at the training ground on training days, with access denied if this is not submitted before arrival.

The Premier League revealed four more people had tested positive after their third round of coronavirus testing on Monday and Tuesday.

There is currently no testing programme for League One clubs, with their season set to be decided on unweighted points-per-game.

League Two clubs have already "unanimously indicated" they wish to end their season, but the EFL board has described maintaining relegation as "integral" to preserving the competition's "integrity".

Win £50k with Super 6!

Do not miss your chance to land the £50,000 jackpot on Saturday. Play for free, entries by 2:30pm.


This news item was provided by the
SkySports | News website - the original link is: https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11688/11995421/coronavirus-fulham-confirm-two-players-among-three-positive-tests-in-efl

Jones returns as Luton manager

Last Updated: 28/05/20 12:15pm

Nathan Jones left Luton to manage Stoke City 16 months ago but has returned to Kenilworth Road

Nathan Jones left Luton to manage Stoke City 16 months ago but has returned to Kenilworth Road

Nathan Jones has returned to manage Luton Town 16 months after leaving the club to take over at Stoke City.

Jones, 47, was at the club's training ground on Thursday morning to meet the first two small groups of senior players ahead of the first session of the day.

He will be reacquainted with the other four groups ahead of the next two sessions, and will take charge of the final nine games of the Championship campaign as the Town seek to avoid relegation - if the second tier is given the green light to return to playing.

At home with... Championship stars

Sky Sports joins some of the biggest names in the Championship at home... including Leeds, Nottingham Forest and Derby.

Luton Town CEO Gary Sweet said: "My job is to make sure the club can escape the severe economic impact of the virus and whatever decisions we make now, it is the club that must be put first.

"We must do everything we possibly can to stay in the Championship this season. We have just nine games left to climb out of the relegation zone and the squad has to be more than ready.

"We need a manager who can hit the ground sprinting - someone who knows us, our players and our environment and someone who knows the league.

"There's only one man who has those characteristics and that's Nathan Jones."

Championship awards of the season so far

Sky Sports pundits pick out their Players, Managers and Teams of the Season.

Jones' journey from Kenilworth Road and back

The Welshman left Bedfordshire a hero in January 2019, having put all the components in place for Luton's eventual League One title win and a return to the second tier for the first time in a decade.

As had been the case with the Hatters, he then took on a significant challenge with Stoke, with the clear aim of lifting the club back to the Premier League after a season-and-a-half of mediocrity that had followed a dismal relegation in 2017/18.

But he only managed to guide the Potters to just three wins in 21 games in the final months of last season before being sacked in November 2019 having added just three further victories, making a second relegation battle in as many years a real threat.

Nathan Jones was dismissed by Stoke City in November after winning just six of his 38 games in charge

Nathan Jones was dismissed by Stoke City in November after winning just six of his 38 games in charge

Speaking to the Sky Sports EFL Podcast in December, Jones said: "We made big errors, missed key chances and we had a lot of bad luck.

"That's not just me sitting here with sour grapes because, over a period of time, you get what you deserve but, at times, things that were happening in games were really difficult to fathom.

EFL Future Stars

Sky Sports assess some of the future stars of English football currently playing in the EFL.

"That's what really contributed because with the owners that I had, with the patience they were showing me, we probably only needed two or three more wins. We just got to a point where it was getting very difficult to see things changing and I hold my hands up for that."

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This news item was provided by the
SkySports | News website - the original link is: https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11688/11996158/nathan-jones-returns-as-luton-manager-16-months-after-leaving-for-stoke

At home with… Preston – Penalties, veterans and play-offs

Sky Sports exclusive: Preston's Paul Gallagher and Daniel Johnson discuss reaching the Championship top six, set-pieces and much, much more

Last Updated: 28/05/20 12:14pm

9:54 Preston's Daniel Johnson discusses his terrific form so far this season, North End's ambitions and their hopes for promotion

Preston's Daniel Johnson discusses his terrific form so far this season, North End's ambitions and their hopes for promotion

Paul Gallagher and Daniel Johnson discussed a wide range of topics as Sky Sports joined the Preston pair at home.

Gary Weaver and Andy Hinchcliffe spoke to the duo reaching the Championship top six, set-pieces and much, much more.

Listen to the 'At home with... Preston' podcast

On breaking into the Championship top six…

Gallagher: "It had to be what we were aiming for. We came from League One five years ago, consolidated well and during the manager's first season we just missed out on the play-offs finishing seventh. Last season we had a number of injuries and suspension issues that we have managed to calm down. We have got players who have come from lower leagues who are probably playing at their maximum every week because we cannot compete with other teams in this division financially. But we have got a manager who can get the best out of those players."

At home with... Championship stars

Sky Sports joins some of the biggest names in the Championship at home... including Leeds, Nottingham Forest and Derby.

Johnson: "It has been tough, I will tell you that. We all know how relentless the Championship is with the amount of games we are playing and how tough it is on the body. We have had injury problems but that's just football, isn't it? You put your body on the line every single day. But if we had not had so many injuries at a crucial time, like we did, I am sure that we would have been higher in the league than we are. At some points this season, we were sitting first or second in the league but things change so quickly in football. Now we are in a really good position and it's in our hands."

On Alex Neil's coaching style…

Gallagher: "He's a hands-on coach who wants to be involved in all the tactical stuff when we are preparing for a game. When he first came, he was very intense but I think he now understands his players, how to treat them and his man-management skills are very good. He's a joy to work for and I think all the lads would say the same.

"The training is difficult and intense because that's the way he wants us to play. If you look at where we were under Simon Grayson - who did a fantastic job - we were more of a counter-attacking team but now under the new gaffer we are on the front foot, pressing from the front, wanting to win the ball high up and it's a good place to be."

Championship awards of the season so far

Sky Sports pundits pick out their Players, Managers and Teams of the Season.

Johnson: "Over the last couple of years we have shown how relentless we can be and I think there is more to come. We have matured and we are now in a place where we know what it's going to take to get over the line. He's had to tweak a few things and, luckily for us, it's been working."

On being the set-piece takers in the team…

Gallagher: "I practise my free-kick routine every day - it's something I have always done since I was a young player and it's something I take pride in. I will take a few balls out after training and I'll be the last one back into the complex for dinner because I'm outside practising, even at this age. The penalty routine is something I came up with and it's served me really well. Daniel and I have got that relationship where whoever fancies it takes and, I believe, whoever takes it will put it in the back of the net."

EFL Future Stars

Sky Sports assess some of the future stars of English football currently playing in the EFL.

Johnson: "We have a look at each other when we are awarded a penalty. Sometimes I will give him the nod and let him have it and sometimes he will give me the nod - it just depends who wants it. We have both showed that we are more than capable of stepping up and putting the ball in the net with no problems but we just share the responsibility. We got one in the first half away at Bristol City and I let Paul have it and then he returned the favour in the second half."

On plans to continue playing past the age of 36…

Gallagher: "It's all I have ever wanted to do. I go to training with a smile on my face because it's a great environment and I have got young players who can do the running for me. I can still run and when we run in pre-season I am still near the front but I have always been a technical player.

"When you are a winner, you just want to keep playing and keep winning. I have always said my aim is to get this club to the Premier League and if I manage that I will be a proud man. The thought of being able to say that I helped a club that is close to my heart get to the Premier League is something that keeps driving me on."

Win £50k with Super 6!

Do not miss your chance to land the £50,000 jackpot on Saturday. Play for free, entries by 2:30pm.


This news item was provided by the
SkySports | News website - the original link is: https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11688/11990372/at-home-with-preston-duo-paul-gallagher-and-daniel-johnson