By ANNE M. PETERSON
AP Sports Writer
Six players with FC Dallas have tested positive for COVID-19 and the entire team has been quarantined ahead of the MLS Is Back tournament.
The club confirmed in a statement Wednesday that the players tested positive upon arrival in Florida for the month-long tournament starting next week.
The team said all players and staff tested negative for coronavirus before leaving for the tournament on Saturday. Upon arrival, two players tested positive. Four more positive tests were uncovered in subsequent testing.
“In consultation with MLS medical officials, FC Dallas took proactive steps to isolate the newly affected players as well as all FC Dallas players and staff in Orlando out of an abundance of caution. All members of the club delegation are following MLS health and safety protocols and will remain quarantined in their hotel rooms pending the results of further COVID-19 testing,” the team said in a statement.
The names of the players were not released.
The league said that no other team has been in contact with the FC Dallas delegation since its arrival.
All of the league’s 26 teams are sequestered in hotels in advance of the tournament played without fans at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at Disney World. The tournament opens Wednesday.
MLS shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic on March 12, after the league’s teams had played two games.
The league said on Sunday that 18 players and six staff members had tested positive for the virus before teams departed for Orlando.
League protocol requires players and staff to be tested every two days upon arrival in Florida. Teams began traveling last week in advance of the tournament.
FC Dallas is scheduled to open the tournament with a group stage match against the Vancouver Whitecaps on July 9.
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