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Watford defender Adrian Mariappa has confirmed he’s tested positive for the coronavirus. The Hornets confirmed on Tuesday that three members of their footballing operation – one player and two staff members – had tested positive for Covid-19.

And the center-half revealed he has contracted the virus, saying: ‘Ever since I got my positive result back on Tuesday, I’ve been scratching my head to try to work out how I might have got coronavirus.

‘It was a big surprise because I haven’t really left the house, apart from some exercise and the odd walk with the kids. I’ve mainly just been homeschooling and keeping fit.

‘My lifestyle is very quiet, certainly no parties or going out or anything, so I really don’t know how I got it. Like most people, we’ve been having more deliveries of food and things, so maybe that’s one way, and my partner has been to the supermarket a few times.

‘The club doctor called to tell me and, to be honest, I did ask whether it could be 100 percent accurate or whether my results could have got muddled up. Maybe if I had been displaying any symptoms then it might have made sense. ‘But in my head it wasn’t adding up.’

Mariappa was informed of his positive test on Tuesday and now has to isolate away for a week before having a new test and potentially returning to training.

‘But I’ve not had any symptoms and I’ve felt as fit as ever, probably fitter because I’ve been working really hard. I’ve been following my training program and I’ve not felt out of breath or ill, or anything.

‘We’ve been fully monitored the whole time and the club has been able to track our distances and things. I’ve been really excelling in all of that and feeling great.

‘It’s quite scary how you can feel absolutely fine and not really have left the house, and yet still get the virus. If it wasn’t for the fact I had gone back to training and had this test, then I’d never have found out that I had the virus and I would just be getting on with things as normal. That’s obviously quite a strange thought.’

Watford captain Troy Deeney has been one of most vocal players regarding caution over returning to action. His young son has had breathing difficulties.

Speaking to Eddie Hearn and Tony Bellew on Talk the Talk YouTube show – before Mariappa’s diagnosis, Deeney said: ‘We’re due back in this week. I’ve said I’m not going.

‘It only takes one to get infected. I don’t want to bring that home – my son is five months and he’s had breathing difficulties. ‘I don’t want to put him in more danger. You’ve got to drive back in the same dirty kit. ‘If I’m putting my clothes in with my son’s or my missus’ it’s more likely to be in the house.

‘I’ve lost my Dad, my Gran, my Grandad – more or less everyone that I care about. So that, to me, is more important than a few quid in my back pocket.’

On Tuesday, the first figures of coronavirus testing emerged for 19 of the Premier League clubs, including Watford.

There were, overall, six positive tests from three clubs out of 748 that were carried out. Burnley announced their assistant manager Ian Woan was one of the six positives


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