Tottenham Hotspur are expected to push the Premier League for a formal postponement of their game against Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday due to a severe COVID-19 outbreak within the squad, sources have told ESPN.
It is understood that six players and two backroom staff members returned positive tests at the beginning of this week, and the entire squad underwent PCR testing on Tuesday.
The situation has worsened since, with sources telling ESPN the number of club members impacted is now into double figures.
Although Spurs are expected to fulfil Thursday’s UEFA Conference League tie against Rennes, sources have said the club will then submit a proposal to the Premier League in a bid delay this weekend’s game. The British government’s advice dictates that players who test positive will be required to isolate for 10 days.
European football’s governing body UEFA stipulates that games must be played if a club has at least 13 senior players available. The Premier League guidelines are more flexible, but six matches were postponed last season due to coronavirus outbreaks.
On Thursday, Spurs must match Vitesse’s result at home to NS Mura in Group G’s other match and maintain a superior goal difference to secure the runners-up spot, which would take them into a playoff with a team dropping down from the Europa League.
Spurs boss Antonio Conte was due to hold a hybrid news conference on Wednesday but cancelled the in-person element due to the ongoing situation.
Spurs also face the possibility of major fixture congestion after their league game against Burnley was postponed last month, although an alternate date has yet to be found.