Villa’s trip to Elland Road on 28th December has been postponed following a Covid-19 outbreak in the Leeds squad.
Leeds were unable to fulfill their Boxing Day fixture with Liverpool and have been forced to request that the Villa game be rescheduled as a number of players will still be isolation.
This marks the second time that Villa’s festive schedule has been disrupted, after a late cancellation of the home fixture against Burnley.
Re-arranged meetings are yet to be announced, but the large number of Premier League cancellations will inevitably result in simply deferring fixture congestion.
Without any irony, Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel bemoaned the playing calendar and its impact upon player welfare following victory at Villa Park. The German brought on 3 world class substitutes, including £97m striker Lukaku in the second half. Tuchel is an advocate of sides having the ability to make five changes, which would of course provide further advantage to squads with strength in depth.
Villa put in a decent 1st half display, but were punished for poor defensive lapses against title chasing Chelsea. Villa managed to get the ball into dangerous positions, but failed to craft many dangerous openings. The game swung in the visitors favour in the second half, with Lukaku bullying Villa’s defence as Chelsea ran out victors.
See the Villa Player Ratings from the game here.
Steven Gerrard wasn’t at Villa Park as isolating with Covid. Gerrard’s assistant Gary McCallister shared an update that the Villa boss was currently asymptomatic and using technology to keep in touch with affairs.
IN QUOTESEmbed from Getty Images
Playing Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea, it has given us a real good look at the elite level.
They prove themselves every season at the top level, in the Champions League. We have had a look at them and done well against the other teams.
It is a learning process for us. When the team is there and right in front of you, you see how good they are. The encouraging thing is we feel in those three games we have run them close.GARY MCALLISTER
LEEDS GAME OFF
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