Coronavirus: Third Brighton and Hove Albion player tests positive

Paul Barber says there are concerns for all Premier League clubs, with three Brighton and Hove Albion players having tested positive for coronavirus.

Brighton and Hove Albion was 15th in the table, two points above the relegation zone, when the league was suspended in March.   -  Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

A third Brighton and Hove Albion player has tested positive for coronavirus, the club's chief executive Paul Barber has confirmed.

The Premier League club said in March that a player had returned a positive test after three members of the squad had been displaying symptoms.

On Saturday, Brighton's confirmed number of cases rose to three in spite of strict health and safety regulations, with players largely isolating at home.

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With talks ongoing over a plan to resume the 2019-20 season, Barber admits seeing new cases among players is a worry for all clubs involved.

"It is a concern," he told Sky Sports News. "Unfortunately we've had a third player test positive yesterday [Saturday], so despite all of the measures that we've been taking over the past few weeks, where the players haven't been involved in any significant training at all, we've still suffered another player testing positive for the virus.

"So there are concerns and I think it's normal for all clubs to have those concerns. We want to make sure we do everything that we can to ensure those protocols are in place and are safe and secure and mitigate the risk as far as we can."

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Barber is against the idea of hosting the remaining Premier League games at neutral venues, an idea that has been mooted as a means of reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

He is now calling on officials to draft a clear plan that will allow teams to return gradually to team training before fixtures can resume.

"One of the things we've asked the Premier League for is a complete plan of all of the stages of returning to play," he said.

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"First, we need to get players back training in small groups, then they need to get involved in some contact training and then training for a match before the match itself.

"So, there are lots of stages, it's very complex and there are people at the Premier League working very hard to produce detailed paperwork to move through those stages as safely as possible."

Brighton was 15th in the table, two points above the relegation zone, when the league was suspended in March.

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