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MIKEL ARTETA has spoken for the first time about his experience of Coronavirus after the Gunners Head Coach spent time self-isolating after testing positive shortly before the North Londoners were set to face Manchester City in the Premier League.
In an interview with www.arsenal.com, the Spaniard spoke of the effect the virus, both on himself and others, both at home and at the club.
“I am feeling completely recovered [now], it’s true I started having some symptoms when we got the phone call from the club to let us know that we might be exposed to the virus because of the owner of Olympiacos and in that moment… I don’t know, I felt something within me, that I had it,” Arteta explained.
“We had a game the following day against Manchester City, so I made a decision and called the doctor straight away and I asked him to drive home. I spoke with Raul, Edu, Vinai, Huss and we set up a meeting together and I said, ‘Listen, we have a couple of players that have been exposed. There is a massive risk there and as well I am the first one feeling the symptoms, very clear symptoms. So if that is the case, all of the players and the people related to the club who are in contact with me on a daily basis are exposed. So we cannot make that decision, we have to speak to the Premier League, to Manchester City and we have to make the decision pretty quickly.
Arteta continued: “Then you realise, ‘Wow, everybody can be exposed here, this is very serious’ and you start to think about the people that you’ve been in contact with and the other people that can be related to us. That’s when a bit of fear comes.
“In terms of symptoms, it was a normal virus for me. I had three or four days which were a little bit difficult, with a bit of a temperature and a dry cough, and some discomfort in my chest. That was it.
“The difficulty is that I have people at home, three kids as well and I was worried. My missus has been through it and my nanny’s been through it. Thank God, the kids never got it. We are all completely fine now.”
Several high-profile footballers were amongst those subsequently testing positive for Covid-19, including Chelsea striker, Callum Hudson-Odoi. Professional football remains under suspension as the pandemic continues to cause concern throughout the world.