The Premier League champions initially made arrangements for fans to tour the academy stadium during their clash against Frankie McAvoy’s side on Tuesday, July 27.
However, a worrying COVID-19 outbreak at the club’s training ground on Friday, which saw the number of positive cases reach double digits, forced the club to take immediate action by asking players and staff representing the teams U-23 and U-18 to move away from campus for a period of ten days.
In an attempt to prevent the spread to members of the first team bubble, the training center, which reopened on Monday, was closed in response to the increase in the number of confirmed cases last week.
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As Manchester Evening News’ Simon Bajkowski revealed, Manchester City will now be holding their game against Preston behind closed doors as a cautious attempt to stop reopening too many facilities at once.
The Manchester squad are still suffering from the effects of the pandemic, which has had a significant impact on the world of sport, with clubs around the world struggling financially amid the ongoing transfer window.
A club statement on the match change reads as follows:
“Manchester City’s friendly with Preston North End at the Academy Stadium on Tuesday July 27 will now go behind closed doors.
“This follows the Club’s decision on Friday July 16 to temporarily close the Academy building for 10 days after a number of positive COVID-19 tests were recorded..
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“Considering the short time between the end of the isolation period and the club’s friendly match with Preston North End, the club takes a precautionary approach to ensure that the highest safety standards are maintained at the venue. the City Football Academy before the new season..
“Fans will be able to follow every kick of our clash with the Lilywhites with a CITY + subscription. “
In their second pre-season game, City will travel to Troyes, another French team belonging to the City Football Group – full details on the Ligue 1 trip can be found here; the tie should not be swayed by the recent announcement by the UK government that all returns from France will have to self-isolate for a period of five days.
Following their return from France, City will face Leicester City in pursuit of the Community Shield on Saturday, August 7, which could set the early tone for a season potentially filled with a plethora of silverware.
It has also been suggested that City will travel to face FC Barcelona in a charity game towards the end of August, not before the Premier League campaign has started.
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