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Inverness Caledonian Thistle say work will be done to cover testing costs

By Andrew Henderson

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Robertson says there are still many questions which need answering following the introduction of new measures to try and keep the Championship running.

Picture - Ken Macpherson, Inverness.
Inverness CT(1) v Dunfermline(1). 29.12.20.
ICT manager John Robertson.
Picture - Ken Macpherson, Inverness. Inverness CT(1) v Dunfermline(1). 29.12.20. ICT manager John Robertson.

Last week’s announcement by the Scottish FA that all leagues below the Championship, as well as the entirety of the women’s game, would be suspended until the end of January also mandated testing in the second tier for the first time.

It was never going to be entirely plain sailing though, and ICT’s match against Raith Rovers last Saturday was postponed when the Kirkcaldy outfit could not fulfil the fixture due to a Covid-19 outbreak.

Robertson says from a practical standpoint, there are still questions which need to be answered around matchdays in the future – not least how to pay for testing.

“We tested last Monday and, thankfully, everybody tested negative,” he said.

“We’ve now got to be even more vigilant to make sure that’s how it stays.

“We’ve asked a raft of questions. Can we now shower after training and games? We’re being told there are still a few Championship clubs who won’t make showers available to us.

“How do we sort out the food aspect? There’s still a lot to be done from a cost perspective.

“People outwith the Championship will say clubs have been given £500,000 from the government – but that’s not for testing, it is for operational losses and keeping the club going at least until the end of the season.”

Robertson highlighted how it was a different situation for Premiership clubs, which have been testing on a weekly basis since returning to training ahead of the start of the season.

It is a whole new challenge for the likes of Caley Thistle though, albeit one senior figures at the club are doing their best to adjust to.

“That’s where we’ve been scuttling about,” Robertson added. “All the labs are down south, so we – as Ross County do – have to organise couriers to get the results quickly. Our location is a handicap.

“The Premiership is well-oiled, well-tuned, but suddenly – within 24 hours – we had to get all these protocols and testing in place without any warning.”

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