Member of Phoenix coaching staff tests positive

A member of the Wellington Phoenix coaching staff has tested positive for coronavirus.

The Phoenix yesterday confirmed earlier media reports - announcing that "a member of the club's football operations staff has tested positive for Covid-19."

"The club is cooperating fully with all the relevant health authorities and is focussed on supporting staff, as well as ensuring that all Government protocols are being closely adhered to," the club said in a short statement.

"As per Ministry of Health instructions, all players and staff who had direct contact with the staff member are being monitored for possible signs of infection - any person showing symptoms consistent with Covid-19 will immediately be tested.

"The club will continue to monitor the situation closely."

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The Phoenix aren't the only A-League club to be hit by the coronavirus; the Newcastle Jets also confirmed a positive coronavirus test from one of their players yesterday afternoon.

"In accordance with relevant protocols, NSW Health has been notified of the case by the club and the correct procedures have been followed throughout," the club announced.

"The player and his family are in good health, and currently in quarantine in accordance with NSW Health protocols. The health and wellbeing of our players, officials, and the wider community remains our highest priority in this difficult time.

"As per advice from NSW Health, our playing squad are closely monitoring their health and will isolate themselves if they experience any symptoms."

The Phoenix squad is already in self-isolation after returning home to New Zealand after the A-League season was suspended on Tuesday. They had earlier been in self-isolation in Sydney, preparing to complete the season, before it was called off.

During that self-isolation period in Sydney, Wellington Phoenix midfielder Tim Payne was charged by Australian police after he and teammate Oliver Sail took a golf cart for a joyride along a busy road on Tuesday morning.

The club confirmed Payne and Sail were involved in the incident, in which they used and damaged facility property.


Speaking to Radio Sport's Jason Pine, Payne said he was "incredibly embarrassed" but took full responsibility for the situation.

"It was definitely a mistake on my behalf. It's just one of those things you wish you could take back," Payne said.

"I 100% expect there to be repercussions for my actions."

The FFA has scheduled a formal status announcement for April 22 to assess when the A-League season could be completed.

In the meantime, the Phoenix will remain ready to continue the season if and when required, with each player being given a personal training plan to maintain their fitness during this time.

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