PREMIER LEAGUE sides have received a timely boost after the government reduced the Covid-19 self-isolation period from ten days to seven.
That means a whole host of big names could return to action for the round of Boxing Day games this weekend.
But they will have to show a negative result on a lateral flow test two days in a row.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said its analysis suggested a seven-day isolation period alongside two negative lateral flow test results had nearly the same protective effect as a 10-day isolation period without testing.
“Health secretary Sajid Javid said in a statement: “We want to reduce the disruption from Covid-19 to peoples everyday lives.”
Any player who contracted the virus on December 17 could now be in contention for Sunday’s games, provided they are coronavirus negative.
Chelsea are one of the hardest-hit clubs from the virus, with seven positive tests last week.
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And Jorginho, Kai Havertz and Ruben Loftus-Cheek could be in contention for the game at Aston Villa.
Manchester United reported 19 players and staff had tested positive for Covid-19, and the club’s training base was temporarily closed down.
The Red Devils did not disclose how many players were hit with the virus, and saw games against Brighton and Brentford postponed.
But boss Ralf Rangnick could have a host of his stars back for the clash against Newcastle on Bank Holiday Monday.
Arsenal should be able to call on Pablo Mari and Sambi Lokonga, while Spurs, who were kicked out of the Uefa Conference League after failing to fulfil a fixture against Rennes due to coronavirus, have eight players back.
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