According to a report out of Honduras as well as by Pablo Maurer (via Sam Stejskal) of The Athletic, Sporting Kansas City have a player “confirmed as positive” for COVID-19 (coronavirus).
Multiple sources tell @MLSist and I that a Sporting Kansas City player has been confirmed as positive for COVID-19. Club arrived in Orlando on Sunday, tested negative upon entry, has been training. First game scheduled for this coming Sunday against Minnesota.— Sam Stejskal (@samstejskal) July 10, 2020
That player “has been in training” as they were negative upon entry into the bubble in Orlando, Florida according to Stejskal tweet.
The news coming out of Honduras initially does bring to mind the only Honduran on the team, Roger Espinoza, but that’s complete speculation. Espinoza was rumored to be on today’s conference call, but he was not there. Again, that doesn’t mean anything, just stating what little we know at this point.
Sporting KC had a positive test earlier but it turned out to be a false positive. That could be the case here again, but the words “confirmed” would seem to imply otherwise.
There has been no word from the team yet. It’s unclear what effect, if any, this will have on Sunday’s schedule game against Minnesota United. That is set to be the first action from SKC on a field in 127 days since the game against the Houston Dynamo in March.
UPDATE: Sporting Kansas City has confirmed this afternoon that a player had tested positive on two consecutive COVID-19 tests via press release. As of right now all other players have tested negative and the club will be tested on a daily basis for the next 14 days. The player who has tested positive has been in isolated in a designated part of the hotel according to the league’s protocols.
In their release, Sporting states that the game against Minnesota will take place this Sunday. The full release is below.
The Blue Testament will bring you more as information becomes available.
Below is the full press release:
(July 10, 2020) - Sporting Kansas City today confirmed that a Sporting Kansas City player received a pair of consecutive positive test results for COVID-19. The positive test results follow mandatory testing two consecutive days upon arrival and a total of five testing days since the club traveled to Orlando on July 5. All other individuals in the Club delegation have returned negative test results. Sporting Kansas City’s Club delegation will now test daily for a 14-day period. Sporting Kansas City will play Minnesota United FC at 7:00 p.m. CT on Sunday, July 12 in the MLS is Back Tournament.
Upon receipt of the initial positive result, the League’s protocol required the individual to be relocated to an isolation area after evaluation by a telehealth physician. Isolation requires relocation to a room in a designated area of the hotel and that relocation occurred under a strict and detailed protocol to minimize the risk of transmission. The individual will remain in isolation and will be monitored and tested daily.
Contact tracing is also mandatory in case of a positive COVID-19 test. This process identifies close contacts: individuals who spent at least 10 minutes within six feet of a person who has tested positive. Those close contacts will also be tested and they can continue to train or work as long as they wear a face mask at all times when not competing, remain asymptomatic and continue to test negative.
Prior to traveling to Florida, all essential members of the Club delegation underwent numerous Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests. Players also underwent a baseline serology (antibody) test. PCR tests detect an active COVID-19 infection. Serology tests detect the presence of antibodies in response to a COVID-19 infection.
Additional information on Major League Soccer’s health protocol regarding testing within the MLS Is Back Tournament is available at mlssoccer.com/mls-is-back-tournament/health-and-safety-protocols.