It was a a source of mild surprise to me upon learning this afternoon of the positive test results for latest high-profile coronavirus victim, Evangelos Marinakis (52).
We both attended the same match on Friday evening, although granted I was sat at the opposite side of Nottingham Forest’s City Ground, the club Marinakis, a Greek shipping owner, owns alongside Olympiakos Pireaus.
Olympiakos are due to host Wolves in the Europa League on Thursday, although BBC sources report having learned that Wolves have asked for the game to be postponed.
”Mr Marinakis was diagnosed after showing the first symptoms on his return to Greece,” said a Nottingham Forest spokesman.
”During his stay in Nottingham he did not show any symptoms of the virus.
”The club are seeking advice from medical professionals and the relevant governing bodies to ensure the correct measures are taken.”
Marinakis had earlier revealed of the diagnosis on Instagram.
”The recent virus has ‘visited’ me and I felt obliged to let the public know. I feel good as I take all the necessary measures and I discipline to the doctor’s instructions.”
Visitors, Millwall, 3-0 victors on Friday night have disclosed that senior club representatives who came into contact with Mr Marinakis have begun a period of self-isolation.
A club spokesman added: “This is purely a precautionary measure and no individual has displayed any symptoms. The club will continue to follow all necessary guidance from the appropriate bodies.”
Yesterday it was confirmed that the Europa League Round of 16 first-leg match in Piraeus would be played behind closed doors. One thousand ticket refunds are being arranged by Wolves for their fans who had proposed to travel.
According to BBC reports, Wolves’ Portuguese manager Nuno Espirito Santo has said: “If we have to go we will. But we don’t agree - we’re not happy to go.”
Forest, Wolves, Millwall and everyone else, including Arsenal are awaiting advice from health officials before making their next moves. Mr Marinakis was also at The Emirates Stadium on 27 February to watch Olympiakos defeat Arsenal in the Europa League, but none of the Arsenal staff coming into contact with Mr Marinakis on that match-day have reported any symptoms since.
The Greek government announced, Sunday, that all professional sports events for the next two weeks will be played behind closed doors, although Britain’s Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has said that events in Britain are unlikely to be affected by coronavirus in the immediate future.