Orlando Pride players test positive ahead of NSWL Challenge Cup
Orlando Pride announced on Monday that they will pull out of the NWSL Challenge Cup after six of their players tested positive for coronavirus.
It has been announced that Orlando Pride will not participate in the NWSL Challenge Cup after six players and four staff members tested positive for Covid-19. Despite some of the results proving inconclusive, the club made the decision not to participate as a precaution.
After the six players tested positive the Pride could not field a complete team with the NWSL tournament set to start soon and they opted to pull out. Club officials also confirmed that all of the individuals who tested positive were asymptomatic.
The plan for Orlando Pride was to travel to Utah on Wednesday to play the Chicago Red Stars on Saturday on the opening day of the tournament. It is believed that the positive cases occurred after several players visited a bar in Orlando, according to a the Orlando Sentinel.
NWSL Challenge Cup reduced to eight teams
As a result, the club decided to carry out additional testing that went beyond the typical standard for NWSL clubs, resulting in a total of 10 positive tests after multiple team members were exposed. Bars have been open in Florida since early June.
According to the Orlando Sentinel the Pride wanted to fly to Utah 10 days before the beginning of the tournament, which would have prevented the situation but the earliest they were able to fly was Wednesday.
The six players and four staff members will be isolated for at least 14 days and will continue to receive medical attention while the people who were in close contact with them will continue to be monitored for symptoms and undergo further testing. The NWSL has confirmed it will update its tournament format to adjust to only eight participating teams.