Stoke cleared to resume season despite manager catching coronavirus – Latest News

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He is in self-isolation after his test result forced Tuesday night’s friendly with Manchester United to be called off.

The Stoke squad are now preparing for their opening game against Reading on June 20 without O’Neill at the helm.

Stoke City manager Michael O’Neill tested positive for coronavirus, prompting the Potters’ friendly clash with Manchester United to be called off

Stoke boss Michael O’Neill has tested positive for Covid-19

Chris Brunt is expected to join Stoke when he is released by West Brom this summer

Stoke’s players have been tested twice weekly and unless they start to show symptoms are in the clear to play.

Stoke ‘s players have been given the green light to resume the season after manager Michael O’Neill’s shock positive test for coronavirus.

The Potters were already at United’s Carrington training complex when news filtered through that their manager had tested positive for the virus.

Whether that can happen is being judged on a day-by-day basis and will hinge on him testing negative.

Assistant Billy McKinlay takes the reins with O’Neill hopeful that he will be back in action in time for the Reading game.

O’Neill was as surprised as anyone because he had tested negative in the previous five rounds of testing.

Stoke go into Project Restart just three points clear of the relegation zone with nine games left.

But O’Neill is expected to pursue his interest in persuading West Brom’s Chris Brunt on a free transfer in the summer.

The 35-year-old is being released by The Baggies after 13 years at The Hawthorns and has a long association with the Stoke boss after playing under him for Northern Ireland.

Brunt is settled in the Midlands and admitted that he was ‘gutted’ when his move to The Potteries had to be scrapped.

O’Neill came close to landing him in the January transfer window but the deal fell through when Stoke’s bid to move on Bruno Martins-Indi fell through.

“I’ve made no secret of the fact that I enjoyed playing under Michael and the impact he had. He got some of the best football out of me in my career – 100 per cent internationally but definitely football wise as well.

“And the opportunity to go and work with him again would be something I would have enjoyed.”

“I was gutted to be fair”, Brunt admitted. “Obviously there is an easy link there with Michael being Northern Ireland manager.

Stoke boss Michael O’Neill has tested positive for Covid-19

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