FC Cincinnati announced Saturday a first team player has been confirmed positive for COVID-19, but the club remains scheduled to play New York City FC this evening at Red Bull Arena.
On afternoon defender Nick Hagglund posted a statement on his Twitter account indicating he was the player who had tested positive and that he began showing symptoms Thursday evening. All other players and staff members have returned multiple negative test results and do not have symptoms.
According to a news release, upon receipt of the initial positive result, the player self-isolated under a strict and detailed protocol. The player will remain in isolation until medically cleared and will be monitored by the club’s medical staff and tested daily.
The MLS testing protocol has all players undergo Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests every other day, as well as the day before each match. The confirmation of a COVID-19 case occurs when a player receives two consecutive positive test results. As a result of this confirmed positive test, the club will now begin daily testing of all close contacts within the first team and soccer staff.
Additionally, the team has implemented contact tracing in conjunction with Hamilton and Clermont County health officials.
Hagglund played in Wednesday’s game against the Philadelphia, but because players have undergone testing Thursday, Friday and Saturday with only the one positive (from Hagglund), the game Saturday is not in jeopardy.
As a standard MLS and FC Cincinnati protocol, all areas of the facility are cleaned and disinfected on a daily basis. Given the positive test result on the FCC first team, an even more thorough disinfecting procedure was executed in the last 48 hours.