Adrian Mariappa has revealed he is the Watford player who tested positive for coronavirus. Two members of staff at the club also returned positive results as the Premier League stepped up its attempts to restart the season.
Six players or staff tested positive across three clubs in a round of 748 tests. Burnley’s assistant manager, Ian Woan, is the only other person identified as having returned a positive result.
Mariappa said he was asymptomatic and had not breached any guidelines. “Ever since I got my positive result back on Tuesday, I’ve been scratching my head to try to work out how I might have got coronavirus,” the defender told the Telegraph. “It was a big surprise because I haven’t really left the house, apart from some exercise and the odd walk with the kids. I’ve mainly just been homeschooling and keeping fit.
“My lifestyle is very quiet, certainly no parties or going out or anything, so I really don’t know how I got it. Like most people, we’ve been having more deliveries of food and things, so maybe that’s one way, and my partner has been to the supermarket a few times.”
Watford have been one of the most outspoken clubs regarding plans to restart the Premier League in June. The squad are due return to training on Wednesday but the captain, Troy Deeney, said he would not participate and the manager, Nigel Pearson, raised concerns about a coronavirus-related death in the league.