Arsenal fans say they are gearing up for Premier League bigwigs to cancel the remaining top-flight fixtures in light of the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The FA, Premier League, EFL, FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Championship today all agreed to postpone games until April 3 — at the very earliest.
The move comes after Gunners boss Mikel Arteta tested positive last night and the club’s London Colney training HQ was closed with Arsenal staff who had recent close contact with the head coach now in self-isolation.
“This is really disappointing but I took the test after feeling poorly. I will be at work as soon as I’m allowed.”
Gunners managing director Vinai Venkatesham confirmed that the
“health of our people and the wider public is our priority and that is where our focus is. Our thoughts are with Mikel who is disappointed but in good spirits. We are in active dialogue with all the relevant people to manage this situation appropriately, and we look forward to getting back to training and playing as soon as medical advice allows.”
Raul Sanllehi, head of football, added:
“Mikel and the full first-team squad, players and staff, will be fully supported, and we look forward to getting back to training and playing as soon as medical advice allows. Obviously, Mikel’s full recovery is the priority now for us all.”
Now supporters say they feel it is unlikely that the season should continue after the initial suspension and many are backing the nullification of the season.
Chris Adsett, a season ticket holder at the Emirates Stadium and a supporter of more than 30 years, said:
“Health is so much more important than football. A suspension is the right thing to do in the short term but I don’t think there is any other response long term than to cancel the season entirely.”
Mark Hughes, a Gunners fan from Pagham, West Sussex, travels to all of the club’s games. He said:
“Realistically the season has got to be ended and we start again next August. Yes, there will be some conversations in the corridors of power that are needed to sort out the logistics of what happens in terms of promotions and relegations throughout the leagues but people’s lives are so much more important than football.”