PREMIER League matches could be set to be played behind closed doors from as early as this weekend, according to a report in The Times.

Countries across Europe have already taken measures ranging from playing fixtures without spectators to suspending matches altogether in a bid to combat the spread of coronavirus, while the NBA in USA has also been suspended in the past few hours after a player tested positive for COVID-19.

And now England could be set to step up their response, with the country expected to move from the "contain" to "delay" phase of their mission to tackle what the World Health Organization have described as a "pandemic".

According to the report, the current football season in England "will not be postponed", with games in the Premier League and lower divisions instead moved to be played "behind closed doors".

It is also claimed "no games will be shown in pubs" to stop gatherings of people to watch them, with season ticket holders "able to stream coverage of matches into their homes".

Just one match in England has fallen to coronavirus fears so far with Wednesday's scheduled clash between Manchester City and Arsenal called off.

The Premier League last weekend banned pre-match handshakes between players to try and prevent the spread of the virus.

A report in the Telegraph emerged this afternoon claiming a Premier League club was carrying out tests after some players showed symptoms of coronavirus.

The Daily Echo understands that club is not Cherries, who are currently planning for "business as usual" regarding Saturday's home clash with Crystal Palace (3pm).

The club are however putting plans in place to try and help prevent the risk of the virus spreading at the stadium and are also preparing contingency plans should the late call come to play the game behind closed doors.