Thomas Tuchel has admitted he is “absolutely worried” about this month’s international break and says Chelsea may prevent their players from joining their national teams.
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said this week that Premier League clubs agree that players should not be released for international matches if they must quarantine when they return.
Chelsea currently have one player – Brazil’s Thiago Silva – who could be required to travel to a country on the UK Government’s ‘red list’. Silva will have to quarantine in a hotel for 10 days when he returns to England should he be part of his country’s squad.
But the Blues’ first-team squad is full of international players who could be required to fly overseas to represent their countries for the upcoming fixtures, due to take place at the end of this month.
Anyone coming back to England from abroad must quarantine at home for 10 days. However, footballers are permitted to train and compete during this time, and any individual can end their quarantine after five days through the ‘test to release’ scheme if they pay for a private coronavirus test and return a negative result.
Chelsea play West Brom on April 3 – just days after players are due to return from their national teams – and Tuchel said: “I am absolutely worried because my target is to play Premier League and if I have players in quarantine, I cannot build the group that we want.
“But I am also sure that the club knows how to handle it and if it maybe is the consequence that players cannot go, then this is the consequence.
“The situation is extraordinary. We have to adapt and we will do this as a club. We will take the decisions. We are very concerned about the situation.”