Festive games against Northampton and AFC Wimbledon are OFF
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich Town have requested that their festive fixtures against Northampton and AFC Wimbledon are postponed due to the Covid-19 outbreak at the club.
Six members of the coaching and playing staff tested positive over the weekend, with manager Paul Lambert the only one named.
Pending an EFL investigation, Town's scheduled games against Northampton (at Portman Road on Boxing Day) and AFC Wimbledon (at Plough Lane on Tues, Dec 29) will now be off.
Town had already seen last Saturday's game at Peterborough postponed due to the fact one Posh player had tested positive for Covid-19 and three others were displaying symptoms. The Blues were already carrying out tests on their own players after several had reported symptoms.
The postponements will give Town chance to get some of their many injured players back for further down the line, but the rearrangements will make for even an more hectic schedule in the New Year.
The Blues have 10 blank midweeks between the start of 2020 and the scheduled end of the regular League One season, though three of those have been put aside for EFL Trophy games (a competition that Peterborough, Northampton and AFC Wimbledon are all still in).
Getting all of the League One games played by May 8 is beginning to look like more and more of a challenge as Covid-19 begins to force several postponements in what was already a compressed campaign.
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Bristol Rovers saw two games postponed last week due to an unspecified number of positive tests.
Peterborough have postponed three games in total, as have Sunderland after reporting five positive Covid-19 tests. Portsmouth could yet follow suit after three players returned positive Covid-19 tests.
Accrington Stanley are already playing catch up with their fixtures after postponements earlier in the campaign.
Portsmouth chief executive Mark Catlin said: "There’s no plans that I’m aware in terms of meetings to discuss a possible suspension. But I have to caveat that football, society and the world view on this terrible disease changes daily.
"Just because last night that wasn’t the case doesn’t mean that won’t be today. I can’t say it won’t loom its head, but at this current time I’ve not spoken to anyone else who’s voicing that opinion."
IPSWICH TOWN'S SCHEDULE
* Games against Peterborough (a), Northampton (h) and AFC Wimbledon (a) to be rearranged
Sat 9: Fleetwood (a)
Tues 5: BLANK
Sat 9: Swindon (h)
Tues 12: BLANK (EFL Trophy last 32)
Sat 16: Burton (a)
Tues 19: BLANK
Sat 23: Peterborough (h)
Tues 26: Sunderland (h)
Sat 30: Crewe (a)
Tues 2: BLANK (EFL Trophy QFs)
Sat 6: Blackpool (h)
Tues 9: BLANK
Sat 13: Shrewsbury (a)
Tues 16: BLANK (EFL Trophy SFs)
Sat 20: Oxford Utd (h)
Tues 23: Hull (a)
Sat 27: Doncaster (h)
Tues 2: Accrington (a)
Sat 6: Gillingham (a)
Tues 9: Lincoln (h)
Sat 13: Plymouth (h)
Tues 16: BLANK
Sat 20: Portsmouth (a)
Tues 23: BLANK
Fri 2: Bristol R (h)
Mon 5: Rochdale (a)
Sat 10: MK Dons (h)
Tues 13: BLANK
Sat 17: Charlton (a)
Tues 20: Northampton (a)
Sat 24: AFC Wimbledon (h)
Tues 27: BLANK
Sat 1: Swindon (a)
Tues 4: BLANK
Sat 8: Fleetwood (h)