WORRIED Premier League clubs will threaten to pull out of the Carabao Cup unless EFL players agree to be tested for coronavirus.
West Ham co-owner David Sullivan yesterday accused the EFL of not testing their players due to the financial implications — potentially exposing Prem teams to the disease.
A major outbreak of cases of top-flight stars could bring the Prem to another shuddering halt.
So the top clubs are demanding all EFL clubs left in the competition go through Covid-19 testing before playing next week’s fourth-round ties.
Sullivan said: “Medically, why are we in a competition where we’re playing teams who have not been checked? The EFL are not testing their players for financial reasons.”
Hammers boss David Moyes plus players Issa Diop and Josh Cullen were dramatically sent home just an hour before Tuesday’s 5-1 Carabao Cup win over Hull after testing positive for Covid-19.
But Hull declined their offer to pay for their players to be tested, with manager Grant McCann insisting they were following EFL guidelines.
Tottenham’s tie with Leyton Orient on Tuesday was called off after the majority of the League Two club’s squad tested positive, with Spurs paying for the screenings.
Sullivan told talkSPORT: “We and a few other Premier League clubs made the offer to give these teams a test at our expense so we weren’t exposing our players to untested players.
“Unfortunately, Hull didn’t want it. Charlton the previous week did, for example.”
SunSport understands talks took place between Prem and EFL chiefs yesterday.
Sullivan added: “We are now tested once a week. We were tested on Monday and the results came through at 6.30pm. The whole team now will be retested today.”
Moyes, Diop and Cullen are now isolating for ten days.
A round of testing costs about £5,000 per club.
EFL clubs do not have to do coronavirus tests on players and staff this season.
So Liverpool have paid for Lincoln to be tested before tonight’s third-round clash, while Bournemouth players were also tested ahead of their tie at Manchester City.
But Orient chairman Nigel Travis admitted: “If I was doing this again I would not do the testing. This is an incentive not to test.”