The manager of West Ham United David Moyes and two players of the club, Issa Diop and Josh Cullen received their COVID-19 test result at the final minutes of their preparation for Tuesday’s home EFL Cup tie against Hull City. The trio tested positive for the virus and they had to be separated from the rest of the squad ahead of the match.
“The manager and both players immediately left the stadium and have returned home,” West Ham United said in a statement.
Despite the fact that the club’s manager was not on the sideline to dish out instructions to the players, West Ham ended up winning 5-1 to scale through to the next round of the competition.
The 57-year-old Scottish tactician, Moyes, the club’s defender Issa Diop, and midfielder Josh Cullen will self-isolate for 10 days in line with COVID-19 protocol in the United Kingdom. This means that they will miss at least their Premier League home match against Wolves on September 27 and their Premier League away match against Leicester City on October 3.
David Moyes’ assistant manager Alan Irvine took charge of the match which took place at London Stadium while Issa Diop and Josh Cullen lost their positions in the team’s starting lineup due to the virus.
At the end of the EFL Cup tie, Alan Irvine told the press that the entire West Ham United’s team was shocked when the club’s doctor and head of physio informed them that three members of the squad had contracted COVID-19.
“We’d had contact insofar as we were in the same area of the stadium as David. We’d been at the stadium for about two hours before the match started”, Irvine said.
“We were shocked by the news. We’ve had so many tests and have not had any positive. But we’ve been very particular about protocol right from the start – the medical team is very aware of what has been happening and we’ve followed all the protocol, and we’ll be following protocol now.”
Though West Ham United got the permission from the English Football League (EFL) for the match to go ahead, there are fears that David Moyes and the other two players had made contact with other members of the team.
If it was so, that means that Hull City players and coaching crew are at risk. However, it was reported that West Ham maintained social distancing prior to the time the test result came out which could mean that there was little or no contact between the trio and the rest of the squad.