Barrow AFC's players have been given the rest of the week off and will stay away from their Hopwood Hall training base as the coronavirus crisis that has devastated sport continues to deepen.

The Bluebirds' season was officially suspended on Monday after the National League postponed all fixtures until April 3, which included the televised matches against Stockport County and Harrogate Town.

It is widely expected, however, that the delay will continue beyond this initial period and until the pandemic is under control in this country, meaning all manner of doubt surrounds whether the 2019/20 campaign will be finished or not.

For now, though, AFC's squad have been given ways of keeping their fitness ticking over during the break from training, with a couple of their players in self-isolation after they displayed symptoms of the virus during the last weekend.

Manager Ian Evatt told BBC Radio Five Live: “We’ve given the lads a week off. Our training facility we share with Toronto Wolfpack, the Super League team.

They’ve gone into self-isolation this week and we’ve had one or two that have been suffering with moderate symptoms, we’re not sure if they have or haven’t got it so we’re pretty much in lock down this week.

"They’ve been given individual programmes for this week but again that is going to become more difficult because we’re not like Premier League players with treadmills in their houses.

"These lads have to go to gyms and if the government are saying that you have to avoid social contact then it becomes difficult.

"It's another obstacle to get over, there is no easy answer. Football is a small part of this, but it is a big part of peoples lives and their futures.”

The National League received a lot of criticism for continuing their fixtures last weekend while other leagues shut themselves down for three weeks, but they reconsidered after the government's advice warning against mass gatherings.

Evatt said: “I was surprised it wasn’t called off on Friday, I just thought that with football, the way decisions were made on Friday in terms of the Premier League and EFL, that the National League would naturally come in line with those.

"However, I do understand the reasons behind playing on. I think they were waiting for something like today where the government has basically said that everything needs to stop.

"So in terms of claiming money back for small clubs and small businesses, it will be a lot easier if they stuck to government protocol.”