What Premier League Managers have said about coronavirus: From Jurgen Klopp’s message to Liverpool fans to Nigel Pearson’s criticism of Boris Johnson

by The Sack Race / 13 March 2020, 15:01

The Premier League has been suspended until April 4th following an emergency meeting on Friday morning.

Top-flight gaffers have been continuously quizzed on the coronavirus throughout the last couple of weeks, below we have picked out a selection of their comments, ranging from Jurgen Klopp’s message to Liverpool fans, to Nigel Pearson’s criticism of Boris Johnson.

Mikel Arteta (Arsenal)

Within an hour of the Premier League revealing that the latest cluster of matches would go ahead (Friday night), Arsenal revealed that Mikel Arteta had tested positive for coronavirus, which in turn led to the league performing a u-turn.

“This is really disappointing but I took the test after feeling poorly,” the Spaniard said in a club statement. “I will be at work as soon as I’m allowed.”

Nigel Pearson (Watford)

Nigel Pearson has not been impressed by Boris Johnson’s handling of coronavirus.

"I don’t think we had any great leadership last night listening to the prime minister. I was totally underwhelmed by the lack of leadership and clear message in terms of what was said in that press conference.”

Jose Mourinho (Tottenham)

“Of course I spoke with him about that,” said Jose Mourinho when asked recently about Dele Alli’s controversial snapchat. “But for me it was quite an easy conversation because he was sorry about, let’s say, the mistake but it was never his intention to hurt, offend.

“He immediately regretted it, recognised it was a young guy mistake, a young generation mistake. And he apologised. So my conversation was easy, it was not a contradiction of ideas with me unhappy and him not understanding why.”


Jurgen Klopp was quick to send a message to Liverpool fans on Friday

Pep Guardiola (Man City)

"Does football work without spectators?," stated the Man City boss when he was asked about the potential to play games behind closed doors.

"If the people can't come, there is no sense. We will follow what we have to do, but I wouldn't like to do it without the people."

Nuno Santo (Wolves)

Wolves’ Europa League last-16 first-leg tie away to Olympiakos went ahead on Thursday behind closed doors, despite the club’s request to suspend the match.

"I understand the decision to play behind closed doors but what is the point of football?,” said Nuno in the build up to the clash, which ended 1-1. “It doesn't make sense to play behind closed doors.

"This is more than football. This is a social situation. Everybody is worried. Something has to be done. Closed doors in stadiums is not a solution. It's not normal.

"We are pretending to lead a normal life when things are not normal. Is there another solution for it? Why not stop?"

Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)

Jurgen Klopp issued a message to Liverpool fans on Friday after the Premier League’s announcement, in which he urged everyone to protect each other and to listen to the advice of experts. You can read the full transcript in the tweet below.

Carlo Ancelotti (Everton)

“I hope that Italy first of all, has to sort out this situation quickly,” said Everton’s Italian boss Carlo Ancelotti. “It’s really difficult for everything in Italy is about our sport. And here, I hope that everything will be okay.”

Sean Dyche (Burnley)

As you’d expect Sean Dyche had a typically no-nonsense response when asked about the response the Premier League should take (prior to the announcement).

"There is nothing I can do about it and I haven't got the depth of knowledge to be wondering what they do with these kind of viruses.

"Scientists are working hard on that worldwide it seems and it is a collective thing.”

Roy Hodgson (Crystal Palace)

Last weekend 72-year-old Roy Hodgson, the oldest Premier League manager in history, was asked about the threat of coronavirus.

"Certainly I have never felt healthier and happier about the environment I am in, in terms of health, at a time when people are asking questions about the environment. I think I am in the best possible place."

Brendan Rodgers (Leicester)

"We've followed procedure and they have been kept away at this moment from the rest of the squad and then we'll see how that develops,” said Brendan Rodgers after three of his Leicester players showed symptoms consistent with coronavirus.

"This is about health. This is more than football, this is players and their families and children, so any risks that are there for their health and everyone else's, we have to mitigate against that."

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Man Utd)

"I would understand, yes, under the circumstances," Solskjaer said in response to a question on whether the Premier League should be suspended (prior to the actual suspension).

"Of course it's up to the experts to decide and the main concern must be the health of the general public and the decision that will be made we will back.”

Chris Wilder (Sheffield United)

“Yes I would,” said the Blades boss when asked if he’d postpone the league. “For me the game is nothing without the supporters. We all do it for a reason and that’s the buzz and the excitement that the supporters bring.

“A delay and for the season to be extended would be my preferred choice.”

Managers Departed

Last man down

Nigel Clough
Nigel Clough
(Burton Albion)
18th May
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