Watford striker Andre Gray issued an apology on Monday after violating Covid-19 lockdown protocols by hosting a gathering of friends to celebrate his birthday last week.
As a result of the breach, Watford were forced to omit Gray and team mates Nathaniel Chalobah and Domingos Quina from the squad for their weekend's match in the Premier League against Southampton as a precaution.
Watford, 16th, lost 3-1 to the Saints and now sit a point above the relegation zone with six games remaining.
"I wanted to wait to make a public apology as my first apology needed to be to my team mates and staff first for not being able to be involved in yesterday's game and the risk I may have caused," Gray, 29, wrote on Instagram.
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"I just want to reiterate that it was not a late night party like what is being portrayed and only a gathering of friends which turned into a sort of football tournament on my birthday.
"I understand my responsibilities and will do what it takes to make it right, apologies again!"