Shamrock Rovers manager Stephen Bradley revealed that Jack Byrne was hit very hard by the coronavirus and said that the Ireland international is still struggling to get back to full fitness. 

The Rovers playmaker tested positive for Covid-19 while on international duty with Ireland for their triple-header against Slovakia, Wales and Finland, however, Byrne tested positive ahead of the trip to Finland and did not travel. 

Shamrock Rovers were hit further that week as they confirmed that striker Aaron Greene had also contracted the coronavirus, which led to three league matches being postponed as a large chunk of Bradley's first team were ruled out as close contacts. 

"Jack is one of the players who was hit really hard by it," said Bradley, speaking to RTÉ Sport. "He really struggled and we are trying to get him back going again. 

"I think Jack has good people and good family around him and they helped him through it. Jack was hit with it badly. He’s still struggling a bit but he’s getting there. 

"The rest are OK, we had to ease them back in because they were tested at different times, some were positive, some were negative, but like I said, Jack was probably the worst out of the group." 

Stephen Bradley's first league success as manager - it's title number 18 for the Dublin club

And Bradley admitted that the Covid scare amongst the club did cause a sense of anxiety as it was something that they never had to deal with before, whether individually or as a group. 

"It was worrying because you are not quite sure the effects that it will have on the players that were affected.

"One or two of the players have been hit really hard and that has been difficult for them and their families. 

"You are facing something that we have never faced before, and it is probably the fear of the unknown. 

"Thankfully they have all come through it and they are ready to go again, but when it first hits, there is a lot of fear there." 

In the meantime, of course, Rovers were crowned SSE Airtricity League Premier Division champions as a result of Finn Harps beating Bohemians at Dalymount on Saturday night – the Gypsies had also dropped two points at Oriel Park on 16 October. 

Rovers were meant to pick up where they left off against Derry City on Wednesday night, but now there is a major doubt around that game due to a coronavirus outbreak at the Brandywell club. 

Bradley offered empathy to Derry having experienced the effect of Covid within his own camp. 

Should the game get postponed, the Hoops will be presented with the trophy following next Wednesday’s home game against St Patrick’s Athletic, although Bradley does not appear too concerned as to when it happens as he says that the hard work is done. 

"I fully understand where Derry are, because once it is in the group, you are trying to retrace everything, think about what we did and the close contacts, so you can give the HSE a clear guideline of what happened.

"Whatever the outcome is of this and whether we play the game or not, we just hope that everyone is OK in Derry’s players and staff. 

"We’re thinking [the trophy lift] will be St Pat’s at home next Wednesday. Lifting for the trophy is for the players to go and enjoy. 

"It doesn’t matter now, it’s done."

Listen to the interview with Stephen Bradley on tonight's Game On on 2fm from 6pm.