EFL make decision on Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United’s festive programme as Covid cases rise

Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United will continue to play out their festive programme despite the increasing numbers of positive Covid-19 tests in the country.

The Owls had their game against Accrington Stanley postponed over the weekend due to a number of players contracting the virus at the club, while the Blades are in action this evening against Fulham.

With games all over the country being called off as tens thousands of people across the United Kingdom test positive, there had been talk of a potential ‘circuit breaker’ in football, however it has now been decided that that will not be the case – games will go ahead as scheduled where possible as long as teams are able to name a squad of 14 players including a goalkeeper.

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A statement from the EFL today read, “The EFL can confirm that its programme of games in the League and Carabao Cup will continue with fixtures to be played where it is safe to do so, and the set squad criteria can be fulfilled by Clubs.

“While the League acknowledges there will likely be future postponements to navigate where Covid-19 cases are identified, there is optimism that disruption can be minimised following implementation of RED protocols, a daily testing regime and ongoing vaccination rollout.”

Meanwhile, the EFL’s Chief Executive, Trevor Birch, said, “Throughout the pandemic, our two priorities have been ensuring the welfare of those involved in EFL competitions and ensuring the fixture schedule can continue where it is safe to do so.

“We will continue to work with clubs, authorities and other agencies to monitor the Covid-19 case rate and be prepared to respond accordingly, yet for now the view remains that we can continue to deliver games safely where clubs have sufficient healthy personnel in place, on and off the pitch.

Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United will continue to play games over the festive period as the EFL makes a decision to keep going despite rising Covid-19 cases. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

“With club mitigation measures, the mass adoption of booster jabs and Covid certification now required for larger crowds, we are sure many fans will continue to feel confident in attending matches over the Christmas period and we look forward to welcoming them.”

Wednesday and United are both due to be in action on Boxing Day as things stand, with games against Burton Albion and Preston North End.