Sheffield United are facing up to the prospect of a disrupted pre-season after the club’s trip to Spain ended in a Covid-19 outbreak.
The Blades went to Spain for a week for some warm weather training and Slavisa Jokanovic and his new coaching team put the squad through their paces.
The camp went down well with the players. However, The Sun now reports that the Blades squad is set for disruption, after two players tested positive for Covid-19 and were forced to remain in Spain.
There is no mention of the two players, only that a forward and a reserve goalkeeper were the ones to stay behind. Obviously, United have a plethora of strikers, while in goal, Jake Eastwood is the recognised ‘reserve’ stopper.
UK isolation rules mean that some of the United squad are now being forced to self-isolate and train alone. That brings with it a disruptive aspect to the pre-season plans, with hard team training now reportedly replaced by individual home workouts.
Bound to happen
How serious the outbreak is here remains to be seen. You’d imagine things are being managed well within the camp, and anyone at home is there as a precaution.
Players are regularly tested, so the club should be able to get a handle on things pretty quickly. However, it isn’t ideal for Jokanovic and his squad.
Pre-season is vital. But even more so when it’s a new manager and new coaching staff. Players need to know the ways of working, build relationships, and get used to new tactics.
Hopefully, this will all blow over as a scare and the two players affected return unscathed. Two big friendlies await United in the form of Doncaster and Norwich.
Jokanovic being able to field a normal looking side in those games is huge.
Let’s hope, then, that any Covid is reserved firmly for those two Blades still in Spain.