A League One football team were forced to travel to their match in taxis after an alcohol spray designed to stop the spread of coronavirus also managed to bring to a halt the squad’s coach.
Oxford United's players and staff raced to meet in Saturday’s 3pm kick-off in hastily booked cabs and borrowed cars after the team bus was effectively disabled by a spray handed out to the squad as they boarded boarding.
Over-enthusiastic use of the 70 per cent proof anti-viral appears to have set off the vehicle’s in-built breathalyser.
That in turn activated the coach’s anti-drink-driving mechanism, essentially shutting it down for six hours.
“The problem is the blowing machine got affected by the alcohol gel on the coach, which meant when he [the driver] blew into it the coach stalled and wouldn't start for six hours,” said Oxford’s manager Karl Robinson. "We had to use staff cars, taxis, you name it to get to the ground."
Speaking to the Oxford Mail after the bizarre incident, Robinson added: “A lot of clubs at our level aren't doing Covid regulations properly, they're miles off it in some places
“We've spent a lot of money on making sure our players are safe and everything that goes with it.”
The team’s disrupted journey did not appear to hamper their performance on the pitch, however.
Not only did the whole squad manage to make it from the team hotel to the match at Accrington Stanley in time, but Oxford also went on to win 4-1.