The Premier League's COVID-19 match postponement guidance has been updated to include a COVID-19 impact threshold.

Following a meeting today, it was unanimously decided that the threshold be implemented to ensure the rules were fairer for all clubs.

After the update, clubs must now have at least four Covid-19 cases within their squad to apply for a postponement.

The Premier League confirmed the change to the rules this afternoon, after they had been criticised in recent weeks.

Aston Villa chief executive Christian Purslow told The Times last week that the rules were not fit for purpose, while Tottenham expressed their disappointment at the league’s decision to grant a postponement request to Arsenal for the north London derby, which was due to be played on January 16.

The league said the new rules would take effect ahead of the next Premier League fixture, the rearranged match between Burnley and Watford on February 5.

They also said they hoped all Covid-19 emergency measures would be lifted by the end of next month.

A statement on the Premier League website reads: "Throughout the pandemic, the Premier League has adapted its guidance in response to the wider public health situation. The guidance was last updated in December in response to the emergence of the Omicron variant.

The League's postponement rules and guidance are designed to protect the wellbeing of players and staff, while maintaining the sporting integrity of the competition and the quality of squads playing League matches.

Club applications will continue to be assessed on a case-by-case basis. The Premier League Board examines a number of factors, including the ability of a club to field a team; the status, severity and potential impact of COVID-19; and the ability of the players to safely prepare for and play the match.

The detail within all applications is scrutinised by the League’s specialist staff before the Board makes its decision.

"It was also confirmed today that the Premier League’s COVID-19 Emergency Measures will be reviewed weekly, with the aim of them expiring on 28 February at the latest.

"Measures include wearing face coverings while indoors, observing social distancing, limiting treatment time, as well as testing."