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Problems for Spain as Busquets tests positive for COVID-19

2021 Jun 08, 9:10, Kathmandu
Spain's Sergio Busquets warms up before the Euro 2020 group F qualifying soccer match between Spain and Faroe Islands at the Molinon stadium in Gijon, Spain, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019. Photo: AP

Spain midfielder Sergio Busquets looks set to miss the European Championships after the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) confirmed on Sunday night that he has tested positive for COVID-19.

The RFEF informed in a communique that the 32-year-old FC Barcelona midfielder, who has made 132 international appearances, gave a positive result in a PCR test carried out at the RFEF headquarters on Sunday morning and that he subsequently "abandoned the training camp in a medicalized vehicle."

Although no other players in the 24-man squad tested positive for the coronavirus, it is a huge blow to Spain's preparations, just eight days ahead of their opening Euro 2020 game against Sweden.

All of Busquets' close contacts have had to go into isolation and Spain coach Luis Enrique's coaching routine will be hugely disrupted with the news that "personal training routines, maintaining isolation will be activated," for the rest of the squad.

That means the Spanish will not be able to work as a group in the coming days, nor will any of the players from the squad be able to take part in Tuesday's preparation game against Lithuania.

Luis Enrique was set to use that match to finalize his team selection ahead of the European Championship debut against Sweden, but the Under-21 side, coached by Luis de la Fuente will now face the Lithuanians.

Busquets started Spain's 0-0 draw against Portugal in a warm-up game on Friday night and although the Spain coach is able to make changes or add players to his squad until June 12th, there is an obvious risk that more players or members of the technical staff could have been infected and test positive in subsequent tests.


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