Derrick Williams is in a period of self-isolation, Tony Mowbray has confirmed.

The Rovers defender was withdrawn from the Republic of Ireland squad last week, with no reason for his absence provided.

The FAI published an updated squad list last Sunday, ahead of Wednesday’s game in Finland, with Williams one of seven names to be left out.

Rovers or the FAI hadn’t commented on the reason behind his withdrawal, having been part of the squad for the Euro 2020 play-off defeat in Slovakia last Thursday.

But speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of the Nottingham Forest fixture, the Rovers boss said Williams was self-isolating in Ireland following cases of Covid-19 within the national team.

That will rule him out of this weekend’s game with Forest, before returning to Rovers early next week.

The manager said: “Derrick Williams is one of five players who are isolating around coronavirus issues with the Republic of Ireland.

“He’s currently in a hotel lodge in Ireland and will be there until Monday or Tuesday, I’m not sure exactly the date.

“He won’t be available for us this weekend.

“It’s all new, we’re living in a different world, we’ve never been through it before, and we just have to accept it.

“We have to accept all the protocols whether they’re EFL protocols, Government protocols, and we just have to get on with it.

“We’re all testing this morning, the whole training centre has been tested, but Kaminski and Corry Evans aren’t back yet.

“We’re having to put on extra couriers this afternoon because they have to get back here to do a test to give themselves any chance of being available for the weekend.

“It’s not ideal, it’s frustrating, because every club is going through it, and we have to pick the players we have available, that are here and working hard and the next game comes very quickly in midweek so we’ll have different players to choose from then.”

Williams has been an ever-present for Rovers in the Championship this season, his form a key part of them keeping three consecutive clean sheets.

The 27-year-old, who had looked set to leave the club last month, had played just once in 2020 because of a troublesome calf issue, but has become a dependable figure in the backline so far in this campaign, earning a first call up to the national team squad in 11 months.

He was one of three players away with their countries, with Thomas Kaminski having been part of the Belgium squad for their last two matches, while midfielder Corry Evans played three times for Northern Ireland in the space of 10 days.

On the scheduling of international fixtures, Mowbray added: “Has it surprised me it’s carried on? Probably a little bit.

“But I always accept people cleverer than me will make these decisions and we have to get on with the consequences of these decisions.

“It seems really strange there were so many games played last night, and if you’re playing away in a European country then they’re not landing back until this afternoon, are they going to train to play  a game at the weekend?

“It’s not ideal for football clubs. Three games in such a short period of time, expecting them to get off an aeroplane, they have to have a Covid test then get the results in time for them to pull a shirt on at the weekend. It’s a nonsense really but we have to cope with it and get on with it.

“It’s frustrating for football club managers and have to deal with it and pick a team for the next match.”