10 players and staff test positive for COVID-19

By Official Florida FC

The Orlando Pride will not participate in the NWSL Challenge Cup after multiple players and staff were diagnosed with COVID-19.

The club made the announcement on Monday afternoon it would not travel to Utah to play in the nine-team tournament that was set to kick off on Sunday. All Pride players and staff are asymptomatic.

“This was obviously a difficult and disappointing outcome for our players, our staff and fans, however this is a decision that was made in order to protect the health of all involved in the Challenge Cup,” said Orlando Pride EVP Amanda Duffy in a statement. “While we were all excited to see the 2020 Pride on the field this weekend, our priority is now making sure our players and staff safely recover and providing any support wherever and however possible.”

ESPN has reported 10 members of the club have tested positive for COVID-19. The Athletic reported that the rash of diagnoses
can be traced to a player attending an Orlando-area bar

The Pride did not announce the players and members of staff who tested positive.

“The health and safety of our players and staff is our number one priority and our thoughts are with those players and staff fighting this infection, as well as the entire club in Orlando that have been impacted as a result,” said NWSL Commissioner Lisa Baird in a statement. “We’re all obviously disappointed, but in the current environment, this is a situation that we have prepared for and we will now adjust our plans and schedules to reflect the circumstances.”

The NWSL Challenge Cup was slated to be a nine-team tournament where each team played four round robin games to determine the eight teams that would advance to the knockout rounds. The league announced its schedule will be amended, but has yet to release fixture times.

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