As players in Major League Soccer’s so-called “bubble” in Central Florida continue to test positive for the novel coronavirus, MLS has postponed Sunday’s morning’s match between D.C. United and Toronto FC.
In a statement, the league said that the “results of yesterday’s tests for D.C. United and Toronto FC produced an initial unconfirmed positive COVID-19 case for one player and an inconclusive test for another player.”
On a conference call with reporters just before the scheduled 9 a.m. EDT kickoff, MLS deputy commissioner Mark Abbott said the initial positive test was produced by a D.C. United player and that the inconclusive result came from a Toronto player. Under MLS’s health and safety protocol, both teams were required to be re-tested on Sunday morning, forcing the game to be postponed.
Per the statement, MLS plans to reschedule the match. Abbott suggested that it could even take place Sunday night, although that timeline seems optimistic at best. Either way, the growing list of players testing positive for the virus is becoming more alarming with each passing day.
FC Dallas was forced to withdraw from the monthlong, World Cup-style MLS is Back Tournament before it even kicked off last week at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at Walt Disney World after more than 10 of its players were infected. Nashville SC was also booted from the competition prior to its first game. Nine of Nashville’s players were confirmed to have contracted COVID-19.
One player from Sporting Kansas City also returned a confirmed positive test on Friday. As of this writing, SKC’s match against Minnesota United on Sunday night was still set to go ahead as planned.
Six games have been played in their entirety since Orlando City and Inter Miami opened the event July 8, including a pair of Saturday night contests that were delayed because of weather. Saturday’s nightcap between Ohio rivals Columbus Crew and FC Cincinnati didn’t begin until close to midnight local time.
Real Salt Lake and the Colorado Rapids are also scheduled to meet on Sunday.
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