The EFL rejected Barnsley’s request to postpone tomorrow’s match at Nottingham Forest, says assistant Ferran Sibila who has been leading training with head coach Poya Asbaghi unwell.

Asbaghi has felt ill since yesterday and has sore throat among other symptoms but has continued to test negative for Covid-19.

It is unknown yet whether he will be well enough to return to lead the side at the City Ground tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the Reds have had fewer than 14 first team players in training – which is the number required to postpone a match under the EFL’s Covid rules.

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Forest initially postponed the fixture from January 3 due to Covid cases but Barnsley have not been successful in doing the same.

Liam Kitching is out after picking up a concussion in the 2-1 loss at Birmingham on Saturday while Callum Styles is a doubt after a knock in the same match.

Callum Brittain, Clarke Oduor, Josh Benson and Remy Vita are all out either with injuries or isolating due to Covid-19. Cauley Woodrow and Aapo Halme are long-term injury absences.

Sibila said: “We tried to postpone the game because we have less than 13 first team players in training.

“On January 3, we wanted to play but Nottingham had the chance to postpone because of Covid cases.”

Asked whether the difference was that the majority of Barnsley’s absences are injuries rather than Covid-19 cases, Sibila told the Chronicle: “It could be that. I am not the person who knows about the rules, but it could be.”