England are stepping up security measures to evade Covid after manager Sarina Wiegman tested positive… with Leah Williamson admitting “it’s not ideal” with players unsure she will return for their Euro 2022 quarter-final game against Spain
- England manager Sarina Wiegman tested positive for Covid on Friday
- As a result, she missed England’s 5-0 win over Northern Ireland
- It is currently unknown when she will be able to return to the coaching bench
- England have stepped up their security measures to avoid contracting the virus
- Leah Williamson said “it’s not ideal” without knowing when Wiegman will return
- On Wednesday England will play their quarter-final game against Spain
England are taking extra precautions after their manager Sarina Wiegman tested positive for Covid on Friday, with captain Leah Williamson admitting there are fears over players catching the virus.
A pre-arranged event for friends and family at the Lionesses’ Lensbury Hotel was canceled on Saturday as part of the heightened security measures.
Players were allowed out of the hotel after practice, as they were throughout the tournament, but were only allowed to meet with people who had recorded a negative test.
England manager Sarina Wiegman tested positive for Covid on Friday
Assistant manager Arjan Veurink (R) refereed England’s game against Northern Ireland
“It feels like you’re all running and eventually one of you will get it,” Williamson said after England’s 5-0 win over Northern Ireland.
“It’s been like that for the last two years. We’re fed up, but at the same time we’ve been chasing everything.
“It’s just unfortunate that it happened to Sarina. We are a very professional team and we have set up our processes and it hasn’t affected us too much. We’ve all spoken to her a bit on Zoom and we’re all used to it too.
The good news for England is that Wiegman is feeling much better and was able to watch Saturday’s training session outside wearing a mask. She is not required to be isolated under government guidelines, but the manager has kept her distance and will continue to be monitored.
England captain Leah Williamson says England are taking extra precautions to avoid Covid
It’s still unclear if she has fully recovered to referee Wednesday’s quarterfinals against Spain, who qualified 1-0 against Denmark on Saturday. The draw against Spain will be the Lionesses’ biggest game since the 2019 World Cup.
“Obviously it’s not ideal, the fact that we don’t know if she’s coming back or what’s next,” Williamson added. “But I think one of our greatest strengths is that we’re a very self-sufficient team, but she’s the leader, isn’t she? So we want her back and hopefully she will too. If not, we’re ready.”
Wiegman’s assistant Arjan Veurink took over the squad for Friday’s clash against Northern Ireland. He has worked with Wiegman since 2017 and said she had budgeted for the possibility of signing Covid during the tournament.
Wiegman was in touch with the team via Zoom on Friday and all training sessions are being recorded should she not be able to watch in person.
Williamson hopes Wiegman returns to the dugout for England’s quarter-final against Spain
“As we all know, Sarina is well prepared for many scenarios,” said Veurink. “We talked about it [Covid] and we know it’s the world we live in right now.
“So we were prepared and talked about individual employees, including the boss at large.
“She was in touch with our technical staff, she had an impact on that [Northern Ireland] game as well. Sarina is really good at managing the staff. It went on as usual. We’ve prepared really well for most things. As Covid has taught us, we can also do a lot of things digitally.”
England play their Quarter-Finals at Brighton’s Amex Stadium.