Brentford manager Thomas Frank
Brentford manager Thomas Frank has called for this weekend’s Premier League fixtures to be postponed to allow clubs to deal with coronavirus outbreaks that are threatening to derail the season.
Brentford’s match with Manchester United was called off on Tuesday after Covid-19 cases at the Old Trafford club and the Burnley v Watford fixture on Wednesday became the third game in a week to be postponed.
Britain is battling record numbers of coronavirus cases as the Omicron variant takes hold.
The country on Wednesday recorded a record 78,610 laboratory-confirmed coronavirus cases, with scientists predicting even higher rates as Omicron is believed to spread much faster than the Delta variant.
Brentford have Covid-19 issues in their own camp ahead of Saturday’s trip to Southampton and the Dane would like to see a break in play to help manage the situation across the league.
“We think we should postpone the full round of Premier League games this weekend,” he said on Thursday.
“Covid cases are going through the roof at all Premier League clubs. Everyone is dealing with it and having problems.
“To postpone this round and also the Carabao (League) Cup round would give everyone a week at least, or four or five days to clean and do everything at the training ground so everything is clean and you break the chain.”
Frank was informed of four more Covid cases overnight — bringing the current total involving players and staff at the club to 13 — midway through his Thursday morning press conference.
And he believes a decision to halt this weekend’s round of top-flight fixtures could be enough to ensure the busy festive programme will be able to go ahead largely as planned.
“We fully respect that we want to play and it is important football keeps going, and this way we can make sure Boxing Day keeps going, I’m 100 per cent sure of that,” added Frank.
“This Omicron variant is running like wildfire around the world and I think we need to do all we can to protect and avoid it. I think we can do a lot by closing down training grounds for three, four or five days, and then we can go again.”