Hibernian boss Jack Ross does not believe games should be postponed on the back of players testing positive for coronavirus – arguing confirmed cases should be treated like any other injury.
The Easter Road manager is planning as normal for Saturday’s trip to Paisley despite fears the clash with St Mirren will become the latest fixture to be axed this season.
Buddies boss Jim Goodwin has been forced to stand down two members of his squad – including first-choice goalkeeper Jak Alnwick – after they were found to have contracted the virus.
But Ross sees no difference between being forced to do without a player because of a hamstring injury or because they have tested for Covid-19.
He said: “As far as I know the game is on. I’ve heard nothing to the contrary.
“We’ve trained this morning and we’ll continue our preparations as normal.
“We’ve not even mentioned (the possibility of the game being off) to the players.
“But there is a likelihood that this situation will become a more common occurrence.
“We said that on the back of Alex Gogic’s case a couple of weeks ago and really this about losing a player because they are unavailable.
“Now whether that is through a health issue or an injury, that is common place throughout a season.
“There are plenty of times when you have misfortune in that sense you end up being light in certain positions – but you don’t call the game off.
“If you take a step back and look at it in a football perspective in terms of losing players, then it’s probably the same.”
Ross has sympathy with Goodwin having seen Gogic ruled out for last month’s defeat to Aberdeen following a false positive test result.
There was added frustration for the former Hamilton midfield destroyer as he was denied the chance to make his debut for Cyprus by rules which meant he still had to self-isolate for 10 days – despite testing negative 24 hours after his erroneous result.
Thankfully for the 26-year-old, he will not have to wait long for a second chance as the Cypriots face the Czech Republic and Luxembourg next month – and Ross has full faith he will finally get his hands on a cap.
“Alex is good,” he said. “He’s back with us after his period of isolation. In terms of his health, he was always asymptomatic, so there were never any issues in that regard.
“The period in isolation was a chance for him to also get over the disappointment of missing out on being called up for international duty.
“What Alex needs to recognise he was called up reasonably quickly into this season, which was huge for him.
“I think he’s spoken to the Cypriot national team and the indication is that if he continues the form he’s been in then he’ll be involved in their next get together.
“That’s terrific for him. That gives him ever greater incentive to continue in the manner he’s started. Hopefully when that comes around next time then he’ll be able to travel.”