Coronavirus: Matt Hancock says UK ‘must take no chances’
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Coronavirus outbreaks in Asia are threatening to disrupt Premier League clubs' plans for pre-season. A number of teams have frequently appeared in overseas tournaments that usually include China, and other Eastern countries, including the International Champions Cup (ICC).
The ICC is the most recognisable pre-season tournament, featuring 12 of the world's best teams.
The competition usually includes at least one pre-season fixture in China, while last year there were also two ties in Singapore.
The 2020 ICC schedule is yet to be announced, but it's still unclear whether Asia will be able to host any matches, amid fears of the coronavirus.
Coronavirus UK: Premier League clubs face pre-season chaos over virus epidemic (Image: GETTY Images)
The tournament was hosted in China, spread across Shanghai and Nanjing.
But, the Premier League Asia Trophy is a biennial competition, meaning there won't be a tournament this summer.
It's also believed that at least one Premier League club has banned all business-related travel to Asia.
The unnamed team has strong ties with the continent, but doesn't want to risk infection from the coronavirus, according to the Daily Mail .
The virus is already having a major impact on international sporting events.
Last week, the Chinese Football Association cancelled all domestic matches until further notice.
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Coronavirus UK: Tottenham faced Man Utd in China, in last year’s International Champions Cup (Image: GETTY Images)
The Asian Champions League fixtures that include any of the three Chinese clubs – Guangzhou Evergrande, Shanghai Shenhua and Shanghai SIPG – have all been postponed.
Away from football, the Chinese Grand Prix has also been thrown into doubt.
The Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) is expected to talk with Chinese authorities over the Formula One race, which is scheduled for April 19.
In basketball, the International Basketball Federation has moved this month's Olympics qualifiers from Foshan in China, to Belgrade, Serbia.
The coronavirus has now caused more than 560 deaths in China.
The death total increased by 73 on Wednesday, which was the third consecutive record daily rise.
As of midnight on Wednesday, there were more than 28,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in China, as well as 24,702 suspected cases.
Last week, the first cases of the infection were confirmed in the UK. Two individuals from the same family tested positive for the virus, while a number of Britons remain in quarantine after being evacuated from the city of Wuhan in China.
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