The Premier League is on track to remove all of its Covid-19 emergency measures by the end of February, following Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement that all restrictions will be lifted in England on Thursday.
The Prime Minister announced that the legal requirement for people who test positive for coronavirus to self-isolate will be lifted effective Thursday, and that free symptomatic and asymptomatic testing will be phased out in England beginning April 1.
The move was announced by Johnson as he unveiled his government’s strategy for “living with Covid,” which is subject to parliament’s approval.
The Premier League is now reviewing its emergency procedures, and a review is underway that could result in only players who are experiencing symptoms being tested.
At the Premier League shareholders’ meeting 11 days ago, the decision to phase out the measures was made.
The Premier League confirmed nine more positive results from last week’s testing earlier on Monday.
According to a statement from the league, “The Premier League can now certify that 2,958 players and club employees were tested for COVID-19 between Monday 14 February and Sunday 20 February. There were nine fresh positive tests among them.”
Lateral flow testing for players and key club personnel has been reduced to twice weekly, down from nearly 6,000 per week lately – excluding the league’s winter break – to less than half that number.
The nine new cases are the first time the number of positives has been in the single digits since the week of November 22.
The English Football League is also consulting with its medical consultants and stakeholders about the government’s announcement.
The approach for future EFL competitions is being discussed. In the EFL, symptomatic testing has only been required since January 22nd.
For Sunday’s Carabao Cup final, Chelsea and Liverpool will follow Premier League testing regulations.
What about other sports?
The ECB has yet to make a decision on whether Covid-19 testing will continue in domestic cricket next season.
The host nation will choose the international series, therefore England’s forthcoming visit will include testing in the West Indies.
In England, routine weekly testing of all players and staff will be suspended, with testing focusing on those players and management who show Covid-19 symptoms.
The host country or event organizer will be responsible for testing in international rugby.
The current Covid-19 rules and testing procedures will be maintained by Super League.