Villa ask for Everton clash to be postponed

Wednesday, 13 January, 2021 41comments  |  Jump to last
Aston Villa have submitted a request to the Premier League to have Everton's match against them postponed in light of the coronavirus outbreak that has affected their squad.

Nine players and five members of the backroom staff tested positive for the virus last week which forced the closure of the Midlands club's training facility.

The mandated 10-day quarantine period for their players is up on Saturday but Villa feel as though they won't be sufficiently prepared for the match with just one day's training.

The match has already been moved back a day from Saturday the 16th to Sunday the 17th of January and the Premier League is running out of free days in the fixture calendar on which to reschedule games and Villa have already played two fewer than most teams in the division having already had their meetings with Manchester City and Newcastle postponed.  

Reader Comments (41)

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Paul Niklas
1 Posted 13/01/2021 at 20:23:54
They were happy to play the shite without a team so no difference in my book. Dont tell me the club havent insisted they keep fit at home. They will be rested more than most teams. So get in with it.
Ray Jacques
2 Posted 13/01/2021 at 20:29:43
If many more games are postponed then surely the integrity of the competition becomes compromised. You cannot have teams 4 games behind the rest as the situation later in the season could be farcical when relegation and European places are being contested.
Tony Hill
3 Posted 13/01/2021 at 20:37:46
I very much agree, Ray @2.
Henrik Lyngsie
4 Posted 13/01/2021 at 20:44:10
I could see PL move the match to Monday as a compromise. Then they would have to move the City-Villa game to Thursday.

I doubt they would postpone it further than that. There might be more problems coming so they will have to do anything not to postpone too many matches.

The clubs and the managers really need to stay classy and show flexibility to accommodate the programme. There is a bigger picture than the PL at stake. It would be embarrassing if the serial moaners like Klopp starts moaning about the scheduling in these times.

Anthony Murphy
5 Posted 13/01/2021 at 20:47:31
Precedent been set now so it’ll be called off.
Rob Halligan
6 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:06:47
They should have a squad of twenty five players, nine have tested positive, so that means sixteen have tested negative. Enough to put a team out with five subs.
John Skelly
7 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:15:42
Paul post 1 you are right they have set a precedent against the pool so they should be made to play even with the youngsters,it's not are fault they have covid control problems.
Fran Mitchell
8 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:23:10
It should be called off. Was done for City, was done for Newcastle

Also, what if we play them, then our players start dropping like flies because they catch it from Villa players? Do we then have to play our u23s?

The continuation of the game is not possible at the moment. Should be suspended for 1 mont to 6 weeks. All European competition should be called off. The Euros should be called off. FA Cup called off. All international football called off. Then finish league competitions with all clubs in Covid-safe isolation over 9 weeks with 2 games a week.

Mike Gaynes
9 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:23:45
Actually, Rob, they'll have ALL players available because the quarantine period ends Saturday. They only want to postpone because some of those players haven't trained.

Absolutely not a valid reason. The league should tell Villa to grab their balls and get out there.

Or call them all off.

Chris Williams
10 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:24:15
One was the cup, so the FA. This is the PL, so arguably no precedent?
Danny Baily
11 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:27:31
This one should go ahead, two reasons:

i) Their players will be available.
ii) The precedent of their match against the RS going ahead in the midst of the personnel crisis.

Neil Copeland
12 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:32:02
I think the PL has set the precedent with the Spurs - Fulham game tonight for which Fulham were given 48hours notice. IMO Henryk has the most sensible suggestion in delaying the game by 1 day to give Villa 48hours prep and move their game against Citeh back to Thursday.

Got to either get on with it or call a stop and cancel the Euros altogether. Then finish the season later than planned.

John Skelly
13 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:35:14
Or what's glaring obvious is that they are afraid to play us knowing our recant form 😷
Fran Mitchell
14 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:35:20
The Liverpool game shouldn't have gone ahead, but as there is a set time of when they must complete the game (before the next round), it was either play u23s or forfeit the match.

The Premier League is a different beast. Imagine if we were hit with a Covid outbreak and were forced to play our u18s and as a result we lost and missed on champions League football? Not right.

Just cause the game going ahead will benefit Everton doesn't mean we should support the game going ahead. Totally undermines.the integrity of the competition

Andy Riley
15 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:43:32
How is it always Everton that get shafted?
Can remember us being forced to play Sunday and Tuesday a couple of seasons ago but somehow because City and Villa have less than a full squad available they can get games called off because they don’t fancy playing?
John Skelly
16 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:43:38
Fran wake up and smell the coffee the game lost its integrity when sky took over plus god forbid if we are hit by covid we would not use that as an excuse
John Skelly
17 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:53:42
Plus as an add on I remember years ago I think Newcastle refused to send a team to play Blackburn because of a flu outbreak within there team,so the points where awarded to Blackburn.
Tony Abrahams
18 Posted 13/01/2021 at 21:57:58
This could happen to any team, and if it was Everton I would expect a bit of leeway, for such difficult circumstances.

Watching Spurs - Fulham, and maybe the rest has done Fulham good, because they look fresher than Spurs tonight, although the match isn’t over just yet

John Keating
19 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:07:29
I mentioned on another thread how confusing and crazy this all is in the UK
We have Cup games where teams have to play with anyone available at the Club such as Villa v RS
We have teams who get un named, who knows how many “staff” with positive results and get games called off. Some make miraculous recoveries by next game City v us
In Scotland the innocent party gets threatened by the authorities if they don’t play, HIbs v Celtic
It really is confusing and probably won’t get better
Prolong the season?
Dennis Stevens
20 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:10:27
I think if these postponements become more common then we may see a lot more short notice rearrangements, including bringing fixtures forward just to get them played whenever it's possible. For example, if there's another fixture postponed at the weekend, we may as well play the other team that's suddenly got a free weekend, even if it's a fixture that wasn't due to be played until April.
Tony Hill
21 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:11:47
I see Sheffield Wednesday have postponed their next two league fixtures but will presumably have to play us in the Cup.

None of this is encouraging. I have grave concerns about the future of the game itself.

John Skelly
22 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:12:10
Well Tony as as an Everton person I would not expect any leeway from anyone_we as always do it ourselves, bring on Zaha ?

Fran Mitchell
23 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:31:20
What about the risk of Covid itself?

How long since Newcastle had their crisis? Well they still have 2 players suffering greatly. Their best player, Saint-Maxim, appears to be seriously impacted by it. The club is being very vague, but it seems.he is suffering from the long Covid. If this seriously damages his lungs or other things, it could well.end his career.

Should the game seriously be continuing with these potential consequences?

Rob Young
24 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:33:32
Fran #24, fully agree.

How come Southampton v Shrewsbury in the cup was not forced to go ahead but Villa v Them was?

Tony Hill
25 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:47:54
That is precisely my point. If the disease is a sufficient threat then, as Mike Gaynes notes, the season stands to be called off and other competitions with it.

After that, I am not convinced that football will survive as the sort of sport we have loved. I don't think these things can be switched on and off and I just don't see a return to crowds and the old culture, vaccine or no vaccine.

I deeply hope I'm wrong but why should football be exempted from the devastation suffered by other cultural entertainments?

I, for one, will not continue to watch the remote version of football for much longer despite my pleasure at Everton doing well. I think that interest is already starting to disappear; it certainly is among a lot of the fans I know, even some of the most dedicated ones.

John Skelly
26 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:49:37
Rob, because they forced Villa to play with a weakened team, so Sky would have someone in the next game to wank over a Liverpool victory.
Tom Bowers
27 Posted 13/01/2021 at 22:56:01
Almost halfway in the season so why not shelve the second half till April or May when the vaccines have gotten a grip of things (hopefully).

The postponing of games is only going to create havoc and controversy anyway as people just continue to disregard the health guidelines and spread the virus at the moment.

John Skelly
28 Posted 13/01/2021 at 23:10:35
I, for one, Tony, will continue watching any Everton game.

Being from Ireland and seeing our Covid problem from being the most positive negative to be the worst in the world, maybe you're right – football may not be that important.

Tony Hill
29 Posted 13/01/2021 at 23:16:31
John, just for the record, I'm not offering a view as to whether football should be shut down, I'm describing my concern for the future of the sport in accordance with the current restrictions and their likely, or consistent, consequences.
John Skelly
30 Posted 13/01/2021 at 23:23:08
Fair play, Tony. I appreciate that.
Gary Willock
31 Posted 13/01/2021 at 23:34:51
We need consistency. If they played in the cup with a weaker team, then same in league or simply don't play either.

Whilst I have a personal view, all other politics are unnecessary alongside asking for consistency. Make a decision on the minimum numbers fit to play and stick to it.

Still think it's mind-boggling Man City got to beat Chelsea and Man Utd after getting a rest against us and it's this inconsistency that raises questions and puts pressure on.

Justin Doone
32 Posted 13/01/2021 at 23:51:10
It's hard to compare cup games and league games run by different organisations.

Imo, football should be stopped.

If the shoe was on the other foot, I'd want and expect the game to be rearranged.

Derek Thomas
33 Posted 13/01/2021 at 00:11:47
I think Villa were and are being a tad selective to suit themselves – as you would if they let you getaway with it... just like City. They saw the Cup as less important, no real harm if we lose it, and it's brownie points in the bag for having a go.

Which is the whole point: every case may be different but there needs to be a minimum standard which needs applying. What? You say there is? – 14 players minimum?

Tell them to do one... and also have a serious look at how they run their bubble... and don't hold your breath for an explanation why Man City were allowed to cancel at 4 hours notice either.

Even with our new-found resilience, if we need to win one or heaven forbid two or more games in hand, I suspect whatever vaccine Carlo has given them to stop them bottling must-win games, may require a few more doses to be fully effective.

I can see the powers that be popping in a 14-day (minimum) football shutdown.

Si Cooper
34 Posted 14/01/2021 at 01:34:29
I don't see what the point of shelving / postponing the rest of the season would be unless it were the playing of games that was driving the spread of the virus. It's not as if anywhere in the country is now particularly threatened by the occasional influx of a group of heavily tested footballers.

What we are seeing now is the result of the virus breaking through the teams' isolating schemes, either through an increased prevalence in the community or because of lapses in the required behaviours by footballers.

Personally, I don't see the need to throw the towel in yet and declare the virus the winner. The clubs have got to get their players back to being compliant (if that is a problem) and the league bosses need to make sure their decisions on individual games are consistent. A team weakened by having a smaller pool of players to draw from or because players have had to self-isolate shouldn't be a barrier to fixtures being fulfilled.

If the Premier League can't apply its rules equitably, then the clubs need to argue their cases publicly.

Don Alexander
35 Posted 14/01/2021 at 01:42:09
I'm sure the Barkley worshippers amid our number, for their own weird reasons, will be delighted to be postponed on the basis that he's now allegedly match fit. That won't last long will it?
Barry Williams
36 Posted 14/01/2021 at 01:48:33
Fran Mitchell - 8/23

Completely agree, the football is providing a welcome distraction at the moment (and mate, I have not been out and socialised since early March – and I am an avid traveller), but there are much bigger issues at stake here.

For the record, I usually work in Shanghai, was in Hong Kong when Covid-19 kicked off, saw how quickly they reacted to it; on return to Shanghai, I was nearly arrested and forcibly quarantined because the authorities thought (wrongly) that I had recently been in Wuhan. I did live in Wuhan a while back and was in touch with people there throughout the city-wide lockdown.

So, I have a different take on the virus than a lot of Brits, as I was in China when it all kicked off and saw how serious it was. That was the end of January... LAST YEAR!

So, yes 2 whatever methods are needed to quell it, need to be implemented, because if football players, who should be widely monitored, are getting it... think on!

Tony Everan
37 Posted 14/01/2021 at 09:23:03
It’s simple, if Aston Villa have 14 players clear of COVID, get the game played. This is the rule and it is the new normal. It should be the same rules for all, applied consistently.

All teams are going to suffer to some extent, so if they don’t want to apply the rules consistently, just call the whole thing off until mid February, then review it.

Kunal Desai
38 Posted 14/01/2021 at 09:31:20
Should get confirmation at somepoint today this being postponed.

Hopefully by the time we play Leicester on the 27th we'll have Doucouré, Allan and Calvert-Lewin back for that.

Dave Abrahams
39 Posted 14/01/2021 at 09:40:40
All lives matter, definitely more than football. I love Everton and football but I value life, for everyone, a lot, lot more. Postpone the game.
Tony Shelby
40 Posted 14/01/2021 at 09:46:00

Fuck 'em.

Hate Villa. Hate their fans.

No more Mr Nice Everton.

Let's play them as planned, batter them into oblivion and work our way up the table.


Brian Harrison
42 Posted 14/01/2021 at 10:44:25
I think what is really poor is that the Premier League knew at the weekend how many Villa players had tested positive and when their quarantine would end. So why at 10:30 on Thursday have they not made a decision as to whether this game goes ahead or not?

I do think that with the FA Cup in full swing and with the next round of European games just around the corner, and if any Internationals are planned in the next couple of months, it's going to be extremely difficult to get these postponed fixtures played.

The Premier League, for reasons known only to themselves, have changed their own rules about if clubs have 14 fit players they must play the game. Man City had more than 14 fit players and possibly Aston Villa had more than 14 and could have played Spurs last night.

Seems the main reason the game against Villa may be postponed is because their training ground is closed, but Man City only closed their training ground for 1 day when their game with us was postponed. So how come Villa's training ground has been closed for at least 5 days, where is the consistency?

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