Chelsea's WSL match against West Ham postponed after Emma Hayes blamed Covid uncertainty for Champions League exit
Hayes' side crashed out of the Women's Champions League after a surprisingly heavy defeat at Wolfsburg. Having lost Ann-Katrin Berger and Drew Spence on match eve after they tested positive, the Chelsea manger appealed for sympathy for her players amid an uncertain situation, and "a number" of other squad members have now entered self-isolation.
Emma Hayes of Chelsea FC Women looks dejected during the UEFA Women's Champions League group A match between VfL Wolfsburg and Chelsea FC Women at AOK-Stadion on December 16, 2021 in Wolfsburg, Germany.
Chelsea's Women's Super League clash with West Ham has been postponed after further positive coronavirus tests within Emma Hayes' squad.
Hayes had lost goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger and Drew Spence on the eve of her side's Champions League encounter with Wolfsburg after they tested positive, and "a number" of other Chelsea players have now entered self-isolation.
A statement from the club read: "Chelsea FC can confirm that Sunday’s fixture against West Ham United Women will be rescheduled.
"The decision was agreed between both teams and the FA after a number of positive tests for Covid-19 were returned within the Chelsea FC Women’s team set-up after the last round of testing on return to the UK.
"The health and safety of our players, support staff and fans remain paramount. The Women’s squad will now begin their winter break, returning to training in the New Year."
Hayes appealed for sympathy for a below-par performance from her players away from home, suggesting they were fearful of another disrupted Christmas amid the coronavirus outbreak and predicting that there may be further positives on arrival back in London.
"Our heads were all over the place, we are human beings," Hayes said.
"A few days ago we had two players stuck down with Covid, we know inevitably that when we land tomorrow there will be positive cases [when players are again tested].
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"When you are in a team environment, you know it spreads like wildfire in the team. I'm gutted for the players because we know that was nowhere near a team that represents my team."