Will Sheffield Wednesday v Nottingham Forest be postponed after coronavirus case? All you need to know on EFL and government contingency plans

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Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis has today revealed he has contracted coronavirus, throwing question marks over whether this weekend’s visit of his club to Sheffield Wednesday will go ahead.

But what’s happened and what’s the latest? Let’s take a look at everything we know so far...

What’s gone on?

In a nutshell, Evangelos Marinakis took to social media to confirm his contraction of the highly contagious coronavirus, which has so far claimed the lives of five people in the UK.

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The country is still in the Government’s ‘containment stage’ of handling the outbreak, with other countries in Europe having moved to more drastic measures, including the postponement of sporting events, with several matches played behind closed doors.

Forest owner Marinakis, who also owns Greek giants Olympiakos, was at Forest’s match with Millwall on Friday and is said to have been seen shaking hands with a number of his players.

Olympiakos’ Europa League match against Wolves next week was already set to be played behind closed doors.

What about the Wednesday match then?

The Government have been on contact with the EFL to discuss contingency plans for if the coronavirus outbreak intensifies.The Government have been on contact with the EFL to discuss contingency plans for if the coronavirus outbreak intensifies.
The Government have been on contact with the EFL to discuss contingency plans for if the coronavirus outbreak intensifies. | Getty Images

Sheffield Wednesday are yet to receive any new information or communication from the EFL or any other body since news of Marinakis’ illness, The Star understands.

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Several pieces of safety information has been sent to clubs in recent days and weeks, which the club has followed closely. Handshakes between players have been cancelled in Championship matches, including Wednesday’s defeat at Brentford on Saturday.

The Star will keep you updated with the very latest news as it happens.

Has anything else been said?

On Monday the Government have played down the likelihood of any impact on matches, but contingency plans have been discussed with sporting bodies and this morning the national media reported that in the case of a ‘blackout’, talks are ongoing over allowing the screening of 3pm games, aren’t usually allowed to be shown on TV.

A source told The Times: “It makes sense to remove the blackout but what we don’t want to do is create a new problem by just moving those crowds from the stadiums to the pubs.”

EFL matches could be made available via the League’s iFollow service, which is usually blocked on Saturdays.