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Atletico game on despite positive cases, Ceferin to be tested

10 Aug 2020 / 23:00 H.

BERLIN: UEFA sees no reason to postpone Atletico Madrid’s Champions League quarterfinal with RB Leipzig on Thursday despite two members of the Spanish team’s travelling party testing positive for the novel coronavirus.

“The match is planned to be played as scheduled,” European football’s governing body told dpa on Monday. There would be no further comment, it added, saying the organization’s medical protocol was being followed.

On Sunday, Atletico reported two positive cases after mandatory tests but did not name the individuals. Spanish media reports say they are players.

As a result, the 93-member Atletico delegation had to postpone their arrival in Lisbon, which had been scheduled for later Monday. The two people who have tested positive are now in quarantine and all other members of the travelling party must undergo another test.

The closing stages of the Champions League are being played as one-off matches in Lisbon as UEFA hurries to finish the tournament before domestic leagues restart in September. The competition had been suspended since March because of the pandemic, with the remaining last 16 ties being completed last week.

UEFA also said Monday that its top management attending the Champions League, the Women’s Champions League in Spain and the Europa League in Germany “will be tested regularly.”

“The organization’s leaders will be tested before leaving for the first match and at regular intervals in between, as required by the local authorities concerned,” UEFA said in a statement.

“In addition, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, who will present the trophies and medals to the winning teams and general secretary Theodore Theodoridis will be tested two days before the finals.

“This programme of testing sits alongside the testing which all UEFA operational staff will undergo if they have any contact with players, coaching staff or officials.” – dpa

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