Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola could miss the champions’ game at Newcastle on Sunday after returning an inconclusive coronavirus test result.
Guardiola cancelled his scheduled press conference to preview the Premier League match on Friday lunchtime while he awaits the result of a follow-up PCR test.
Should it prove positive and the Spaniard be asked to isolate, he would not only miss the trip to St James’ Park but also the home clash with Leicester on Boxing Day.
At present, Sunday’s game is one of only five in the top flight still due to go ahead this weekend following a raft of postponements amid the latest rise in Covid-19 infection rates nationally.
Guardiola, who lost his mother to the virus last year, was last seen in public on Wednesday when he represented City at Sergio Aguero’s retirement announcement in Barcelona.
The 50-year-old was wearing a mask for the main presentation and has been quite vocal on the need for, not only his players, but society in general to maintain high levels of caution.
“I’m concerned – not because we are going to cancel or break the league but because in society the virus is here and people suffer,” he said earlier this week.
“Some people, staff here, have got it right now and we’ve spoken with the players almost every day and told them to be careful – stay safe, stay healthy, (wear) masks, social distance.”
City head into the weekend’s decimated round of fixtures with a one-point lead at the top of the table.
Joao Cancelo will be available again after suspension and fellow full-back Kyle Walker will hope to return after missing the 7-0 win over Leeds on Monday due to reported illness.