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Mick McCarthy in self-isolation and encourages public to follow guidance during coronavirus outbreak

 

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Mick McCarthy

Mick McCarthy

�INPHO/Pascal Muller

Mick McCarthy

Mick McCarthy says he is self-isolating at his home in England after two of his neighbours tested positive for Covid-19.

In a statement issued by the FAI, the Republic of Ireland boss encouraged supporters to "stay safe" and heed the advice of the health authorities.

"I should have been on the training ground at Abbotstown with the players today, getting ready for Slovakia and working on shapes and game plans," said McCarthy.

"Instead, I am back home in Bromley and isolating as two of our near neighbours have been diagnosed with coronavirus and it is now very real and very frightening for us.

"Like so many others, we are trying so hard to play by the rules here and stay at home. My wife Fiona and I are not seeing our children or our grandchildren and it's tough.

"We are doing what the authorities are telling us and that is the message I want to send to everyone in Ireland today. Let's do as we are told - let's ensure we listen to the guidelines so that we don't end up like Italy.

"It is very real now. You look at the footage of the Italian Army carrying coffins from houses and it shows you where this could end up. That's the threat this poses."

McCarthy added that he fully endorsed the Uefa decision to postpone the Euro 2020 play-off in Slovakia (due to take place tomorrow) as the impact of Covid-19 takes hold.

"Postponing our game in Slovakia and delaying the Euros for a year was the right thing to do. We are not complaining about that. It was the right decision by Uefa and we support it," he said.

"Football will come back when the time is right and we have resolved these issues. For now, we have to take notice of what's happening in Ireland, Britain and across Europe and the world.

"We have to take heed and learn the lessons. When you see the sacrifices our doctors, nurses, medical teams and frontline services are making, when you see the work they are doing, we have to say, 'Thank you' and we have to play our part. Let's do this together. Let's stay safe."

Belfast Telegraph