Spain has already sent a B-team to the training ground just in case, the first opponent, Sweden, is going through a “nightmare”: The European Football Championship has not really started yet, as Corona is already throwing the plans upside down. Group E, which should start on Monday – also with the game between Spain and Sweden, becomes a problem. But that is exactly what is no longer so certain.
Especially with the co-favorites Spain, the fear has been going around since Wednesday. Because after captain Sergio Busquets, defender Diego Llorente also tested positive for the virus, a chain reaction threatens.
“There could be more cases. It is likely that that will happen,” said association boss Luis Rubiales after the 4-0 win in the last test against Lithuania, in which Spain’s U21s were inevitably on the field.
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We could breathe a sigh of relief on Wednesday evening: All PCR tests on the team, coaching staff and delegation were negative. Even with the B-Team, which was hastily put together in case of emergency, no further case was initially found.
Eleven players from that U21 squad, including ex-Schalke Juan Miranda, joined a training group called “Parallel Blase” by the association in Las Rozas on Wednesday, which has now grown to 17 men. This is an “anticipation of possible consequences,” said national coach Luis Enrique.
13 players must be available for a European Championship game
Means: With a “shadow team”, Spain wants to prevent the first meeting in Seville against Sweden (9:00 p.m.) at the green table from being lost. In addition, the Ministry of Health decided to vaccinate the national players before the start of the European Championship.
13 players, including a goalkeeper, must be available to compete, according to UEFA regulations. If this is not the case due to quarantine measures, an encounter can be postponed by up to 48 hours.
If a nation still does not have a team capable of playing, it loses the game at the green table 0: 3. Spain would prevent that with its B-Elf, but a successful preparation looks different.
Sweden complains about two corona cases
But opponents Sweden have long had their own worries too. The newspaper “Expressen” wrote on Wednesday of a “nightmare message”, the “Aftonbladet” of a “little bomb” because two players tested positive within a very short time. First, Dejan Kulusevski from Juventus Turin met Mattias Svanberg from FC Bologna a little later.
While Kulusevski stayed directly in Stockholm and will definitely be out of the game in Spain, Svanberg had initially entered the training ground with the national team at the base in Gothenburg – before he left the pitch again shortly before warming up after a brief conversation with team doctor Anders Valentin and went into the field Team hotel was brought. The news came a little later: Svanberg also tested positive, probably after direct contact with Kulusevski.
Kulusevski probably got infected during his days off
“Of course I’m sad,” said national coach Stefan Pettersson at a press conference a little later. The fact that the team – unlike Germany – had three days off between the test against Finland on May 29 (2-0) and the reunion four days later caused great criticism. In all likelihood, Kulusevski became infected during this time.
A total of four players were identified who had contact with Kulusevski and are now being “observed”. In future, team meetings will only take place in small groups in rooms that are as large as possible, treatments will be relocated outdoors, and as few people as possible should sit on the bus. “It will be long days in the bladder,” wrote the Aftonbladet.
This also applies to the Spaniards, who now look at the results of the corona tests every day. “What now, Spain?” Asked the daily “Marca” in large letters. It now seems more than questionable whether the European champions from 1964, 2008 and 2012 are actually a candidate for the title this year.
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