Aaron Connolly sat 10cm too close to staff member with Covid-19

REVEALED: Brighton striker Aaron Connolly had to miss Ireland’s Euro 2020 play-off defeat in Slovakia because his seat on the flight out was 10 CENTIMETRES too close to staff member who tested positive for coronavirus

  • Aaron Connolly sat out Ireland’s shootout defeat against Slovakia on Thursday
  • He had sat 1.9m away from staff member who tested positive for Covid-19
  • Brighton striker was in line to start the Euro 2020 play-off semi-final
  • Connolly is now a doubt for Brighton’s trip to Crystal Palace next weekend 

Aaron Connolly was forced to miss Republic of Ireland’s Euro 2020 play-off defeat in Slovakia after his seat on the team’s aeroplane was deemed 10 centimetres too close to a member of staff who later tested positive for Covid-19 – and he will now return to Brighton.

The striker would have started Thursday night’s semi-final, which ended in elimination on penalties after a goalless draw.

But the Irish Health Service Executive insisted that Connolly must self-isolate after reviewing the seating plan of the flight to Bratislava. It revealed that the 20-year-old was 1.9 metres away from the individual who later returned a positive test.

Aaron Connolly was forced to miss Republic of Ireland’s Euro 2020 play-off defeat in Slovakia

The striker was sat too close to a member of staff who tested positive for coronavirus

The Football Association of Ireland spent most of Thursday appealing to the HSE to have their decision overturned, but that request was denied on the grounds that Connolly was within two metres of the individual for more than two hours.

It means that Connolly and Norwich forward Adam Idah – who was sat 1.7m away – have been forced into self-isolation and will now miss Sunday’s Nations League game at home to Wales, as well as next Wednesday’s trip to Finland. 

They will travel back to the UK independent of the Ireland team.

Ireland’s hopes of reaching Euro 2020 next summer ended in heartbreak on penalties 

Slovakia beat Ireland 4-2 on penalties after 120 minutes of football ended 0-0

Connolly is also a doubt for Brighton’s Premier League trip to Crystal Palace next weekend, given that the game will fall within a 14-day period of him coming into close contact with a person who has tested positive for Covid-19.

Likewise Idah, with Norwich facing both Rotherham and Birmingham within that period.

Ireland were beaten 4-2 on penalties and will now be spectators when Euro 2020 matches are staged in Dublin next summer.




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