Premier League has 'no plans' to pause season despite coronavirus postponements

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The Premier League has insisted that it is not considering pausing the season despite issues created by a recent uptick in coronavirus cases.

A pair of matches have been postponed this week as the increase of Covid-19 cases across England has impacted the footballing schedule.

Everton's clash with Manchester City was postponed on Monday after the latter experienced several positive tests while a series of cases at Fulham led to the postponement of their match with Tottenham on Wednesday. 

Additionally, Aston Villa's meeting with Newcastle was postponed earlier this month due to an outbreak involving the latter.

In a statement confirming Wednesday's scheduling decision, the Premier League said that those in charge have "full confidence" the season will continue amid the coronavirus outbreak.

That statement came after several coaches, including Sam Allardyce and Nuno Espirito Santo, called for a potential pause to the season due to the surge in cases.

Jose Mourinho, meanwhile, aimed a dig at the league on Wednesday as he complained about the uncertainty his side faced as a result of Fulham's positive tests.

But, on Wednesday, the Premier League doubled down on its stance that the season will go on as planned with the league saying it will continue to follow government protocols.

"The Premier League has not discussed pausing the season and has no plans to do so," the league said in a statement on Wednesday.

"The League continues to have confidence in its Covid-19 protocols to enable fixtures to be played as scheduled, and these protocols continue to have the full backing of Government.

"With the health of players and staff the priority, the League is also fully supportive of how clubs are implementing the protocols and rules."

Fans will not be allowed at any Premier League matches for the time being after Liverpool was placed in Tier 3 of the national coronavirus restrictions, having previously been the only city with fans allowed in the stadium.

Wednesday concludes Matchday 16 in the Premier League, with Liverpool currently sitting atop the table after claiming the Premier League title last season. 

The busy festive period will resume on Friday, though, as Everton host West Ham and Aston Villa head to Old Trafford to face Manchester United on New Year's Day. 

Following the end of Matchday 17 on Monday, the FA Cup and Carabao Cup will resume, further adding to the fixture crunch.