Manchester City‘s Premier League showdown with title rivals Chelsea on Saturday lunchtime is reportedly set to go ahead as planned, despite a coronavirus outbreak among Pep Guardiola‘s squad.
Guardiola and assistant coach Juanma Lillo – who tested positive for COVID-19 – missed last Friday’s 4-1 win away at Swindon Town in the FA Cup, as did 14 other members of staff and seven first-team players who were all forced to self-isolate.
The Citizens were still able to name a strong starting lineup at the County Ground, despite including only 12 senior players in their matchday squad.
Assistant coach Rodolfo Borrell, who was in the dugout for the win at Swindon, has since revealed that he expects Guardiola to lead the team at the weekend, though there are still some doubts regarding City’s COVID-19 situation.
According to The Times, City’s clash with Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium is expected to go ahead at 12.30pm as the home team’s coronavirus outbreak is not severe enough to postpone the match just yet.
Man City are yet to have named the first-team players who had to isolate, though goalkeeper Ederson as well as John Stones, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Fernandinho, Jack Grealish, Phil Foden, and Raheem Sterling were all absent against Swindon.
Chelsea have also had several coronavirus-related issues of their own this season, with N’Golo Kante, Thiago Silva and Edouard Mendy – the latter currently away at AFCON with Senegal – all ruled out with the virus, while Ben Chilwell, Reece James and Trevor Chalobah are all suffering with injuries.