Graham Potter says the delay of fans’ return to stadia is “a blow” – as the Premier League call for a rethink on latest rules.

Tightening restrictions aimed at combatting Covid-19 mean spectators cannot return from October 1, as had been hoped.

Albion want to re-open stands at the Amex as soon as possible – initially to attendances below capacity - amid growing financial worries.

They had hoped the forthcoming international break could be a key juncture in the return of the first spectators.

Chances of that happening any time soon appeared to recede following today’s announcements.

Albion head coach Potter had not had time to read the latest news in full when he spoke to the media soon after training today.

READ MORE: How we reported this morning's news

But he said: “It’s a blow at a football level because we want to play in front of people, we want to interact with the supporters and we want to get our lives back to normal.

“That’s the sad thing, if you zoom out of football, it’s a reflection of how life and society is and the challenges that we face.

“We were driving through Newcastle on Sunday and you could tell things have changed to how we normally live our lives and that’s what is so sad.

“It is, what it is. We have to work with the government and the authorities to make sure that, when supporters are back, they are back safely.

“We hope that is sooner rather than later.”

Prem clubs are aware of health concerns but remain confident their venues are safe and their protocols are robust and adequate.

A statement released today read: “The Premier League is certain that, through league-wide guidelines and a code of conduct developed with scientific experts and agreed by the Government's Sports Ground Safety Authority, fans in stadiums will be as safe or even safer than at any other public activity currently permitted. This is already evident in other European leagues.”