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2 more LAFC players - Diego Rossi and Jose Cifuentes - test positive for coronavirus

It’s another outbreak, albeit abroad this time.

Houston Dynamo v Los Angeles FC Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

In recent days, three more Los Angeles Football Club players have tested positive for coronavirus, while out on international duty.

We were already aware of Diego Palacios’ positive result because Ecuador’s federation announced it last week, but his club and country teammate, Jose Cifuentes, also tested positive as announced this week by the federation. There was an inkling that something might be up with the duo because they both missed the first (and then second) of Ecuador’s World Cup qualifiers this month, and so it proved.

Meanwhile, a third — and honestly, the most important for LAFC’s purposes — international from the club has tested positive, as Diego Rossi was announced as testing positive by Uruguay’s federation on Wednesday.

LAFC released a statement Wednesday afternoon discussing the turn of events.

Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) has confirmed that defender Diego Palacios, midfielder José Cifuentes and forward Diego Rossi have tested positive for COVID-19 while with the Ecuador and Uruguay National Teams during the most recent November FIFA international window.

Upon receipt of the positive results, the players entered self-isolation in their respective countries and will remain isolated and follow their local restrictions and protocol prior to returning to Los Angeles. Additionally, forward Brian Rodriguez, who has been with the Uruguayan National Team, continues to test negative at this time. His return to Los Angeles as well as his status for LAFC’s playoff match against Seattle Sounders FC on Nov. 24 is still to be determined.

Interestingly, there was a slight hope the Uruguayans would be available for LAFC’s playoff game Tuesday against the Sounders, with a report from ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle claiming MLS was trying to bypass the 9- or 10-day quarantine period by flying internationals charter where possible. Putting aside the actual wisdom of trying to bypass quarantine entirely, in the case of Rossi, he’s a big enough star that I can imagine LAFC and the league would have agreed to do it in the interest of the game and the players.

But that’s mostly moot now, and while Rodriguez could turn out to return to the United States and perhaps even play next week in the playoffs, the other three are almost certainly out.

And that’s what we thought in the first place, honestly, so that doesn’t change much. But now six LAFC players have tested positive for coronavirus in recent weeks, and among those currently positive, go heartiest wishes for them to hopefully not get too sick and to fully recover. As well, here’s yet another reminder to you, dear reader, to wear a mask when you are out in public, practice responsible social distancing, and wash your hands well and regularly.

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