Posted: Fri 18th Sep 2020

Updated: Fri 18th Sep

Nomads issue statement following Andy Morrison’s comments they “had to turn a blind eye” to players turning up feeling unwell

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales

Connah’s Quay Nomads have issued a statement following comments made by manager Andy Morrison after their Europa League match against Dinamo Tbilisi in Wrexham last night.

On Wednesday the club confirmed that three players tested positive for COVID-19 with an additional player showing symptoms.

Following the match – which Nomads lost 1-0 after conceding a 97th minute penalty – Morrison said they “had to turn a blind eye” to players who turned up feeling unwell.

In an interview with media outlets, Morrison said: “Three lads have turned up tonight and they’re not well.

And it’s like ‘lads, I don’t want to hear it. I can’t hear it tonight that you’re ill… let’s just get through it’.

“I’ve been told that before the game and we’ve had to turn a blind eye to it and then you would have never noticed that anyone there tonight wasn’t feeling great.”

Nomads have said Morrison’s comments have been “misconstrued by many” to mean the club we ignored Covid regulations.”

The club has said: “Ahead of kick off, it was public knowledge that we had received three positive Covid tests with one additional player showing symptoms with all four being immediately self-isolated.”

“On Thursday, our backroom staff worked diligently alongside Public Health Wales, FAW and UEFA to ensure that the fixture would go ahead with all three governing bodies acknowledging that the club had followed all required protocol.

This included all of our available matchday squad and staff completing the industry recognised Benchmark54 App before midday of the game which asks an 11 question questionnaire regarding health and Covid symptoms – all of these came back negative. Additionally, everyone was temperature checked upon arrival at the stadium.”

In a post-match interview with various media outlets, Andy Morrison used the term “turned a blind eye” which Nomads said “has unfortunately been misconstrued by many to mean that as a club we ignored Covid regulations.”

“We would like to go on record and say that this is categorically untrue and that what the Manager was referring to was a number of players who may not have played had we had a fully fit squad.”

Morrison clarified own personal Twitter account, “indicating that a number of players had suffered from isolated pre-match upset stomach and headaches likely down to nerves due to being thrust into the starting lineup of such a high profile fixture.” The statement says.

The statement goes onto to say: “We would like to note that the BBC Sport Wales article reported on Thursday night contains factually incorrect details as they have claimed that we had four players test positive when in reality we had three players test positive and an additional one player needing to self-isolate despite testing negative.

Our medical staff felt he should self-isolate despite the negative test to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

Additionally, we had one player out with injury and one player out with a non-Covid related illness.”

“Despite the defeat, we feel that the effort shown by everyone involved was one that we should all be extremely proud of.

UEFA told, ”We have no specific comment to make and refer you to the UEFA Return to Play Protocol.”

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