Premier League clubs agree to new postponement guidance after controversial decisions to call games off

In order to have a match called off, teams will have to show four positive carbon dioxide cases.

The guidance change comes after a series of controversial decisions to call off matches, with clubs using a combination of coronaviruses, injuries, suspensions and players on international duty to postpone games.

There have been 22 match postponements this season due to coronaviruses.

The last match to be called off was the controversial postponement of the Spurs game by the Gunners.

The number of positive Covid-19 cases had fallen for the fourth week in a row.

There were 16 new cases among players and staff in the seven days up to and including January 23, the lowest number of positives in a week since December 5.

The new guidance will come into effect on February 5 when the next premier league game is played.

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Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte during the Premier League match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London. Picture date: Sunday November 21, 2021.
Tottenham head coach Antonio Conte says he has been surprised to see Premier League games being postponed because of the number of injured players at clubs

Analysis: Change in guidance, not rules

Sky Sports News is hosted by Rob Dorsett.

This is not a change in the rules.

The rules still apply if the clubs have 13 outfield players and a goalkeeper fit and available. The clubs were reluctant to change the rules mid-season.

Sky Sports News has been told that the new guidance will help steer the discretion displayed by the league board, when they receive an application for postponement, and to discourage clubs from applying for postponements on the basis of non-Covid-related absences.

Wednesday's decision has raised the bar in terms of the number of Covid cases required to get a match postponed. If other players in the squad were absent because of injury or international duty, a single positive Covid case in the squad was the reason for applying for a postponement.

A club must prove at least four positive Covid cases within the first-team squad to even apply.

Each application for postponement will be assessed on its own circumstances.

The clubs decided not to change the Covid protocols around stadiums and training grounds, which are still under emergency measures. The players in the premier league will still be tested daily.

This will be reviewed on a weekly basis.

It is expected that the measures will be relaxed after the impact of players returning to their clubs after the current winter break is assessed.

Neville and Carragher critical of postponements

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Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher have their say on whether Premier League clubs should be allowed to call matches off due to Covid, injuries and the Africa Cup of Nations

Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher both agreed that England's top clubs must stop using coronaviruses as an excuse to delay games.

I honestly believe that all teams in the league must play their games.

If it was solely down to Covid in extraordinary circumstances where there was 10 or 15 players out, we are now talking about teams that have been calling games off. It has to stop.

Manchester United and other teams have between 30 to 40 players in their squad.

It has to stop now and we have to make teams play.

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Neil Lennon says it's inevitable that team will try and bend the rules around Premier League postponements if they're able to

No other league in Europe is doing this. In their last game, they played a 16-year-old and that tells you where they are. Why can't we do that? The young players are not given an opportunity in these circumstances.

Everyone is in the same boat and I am with Gary. If it is an outbreak of Covid and it has decimated the squad, I can understand that, but the players are in the tournament and have normal injuries.

You have U23 squad and younger players, and this is an opportunity where they can get a chance.

I know there is a lot riding on the games in the premier league, but at the moment teams up and down the country are taking advantage of the situation.

Tuchel and Hasenhuttl speak out on Covid rules

Asked if he felt Covid rules were being abused earlier this month, Thomas Tuchel said he would be very angry if that was the case.

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Thomas Tuchel says he will be 'very angry' if Covid rules are being abused by other clubs after Chelsea were told they had to play a match when they felt they were stretched during the Christmas fixtures

We were made to play when we thought maybe we shouldn't, because we were doing everything to make games happen. I hope the rules are the same for everyone.

The lack of transparency for postponements and how the league is dealing with it was a strong point for Hasenhuttl.

He said earlier this month that someone is walking through now that the door has been opened. I can't say anything about the Covid situation because it's usually the reason why games are canceled.

You have no view, no transparency, and you can't say anything about that. The rest is speculation.

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Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has welcomed the Premier League's decision to review the rules regarding fixture postponements

The league has to deal with this. This is the reason I say that new signings shouldn't be allowed to play in a canceled game when they haven't been there. It is hard to solve this problem at the moment.

Which Premier League games have been called off?

There is snow in the Premier League.

The premier league will be played on January 19

The game was originally scheduled for December 15, but has been moved to February 5 at 6pm.

The premier league will be played on January 19

The Man Utd vs BRIGHTON game is on December 18.

The game was played on December 18 in the premier league.

The game is on Saturday December 18 in the premier league.

Saturday December 18th is the date of the West Ham vsNorwich game.

The Saturday December 18th game is between Aston Villa and Burnley.

There were two postponements of Sunday December 19th, the Premier League match betweenEverton andLeicester.

There is a football game on Sunday December 26, the premier league.

The Wolves and Hornets are playing in the Premier League on December 26.

The game is on Sunday December 26, in the premier league.

The game is on Tuesday, December 28, in the premier league.

The game is on Tuesday, December 28, in the premier league.

The game is on Thursday December 30, in the premier league.

Saturday January 1 is the premier league.

On January 2, there will be a game in the premier league.

The game is on Saturday, January 15, in the premier league.

Sunday, January 16th, is the date of the premier league match.

Tuesday, January 18th, is the day of the premier league game.