MLS announced Monday that FC Dallas will not participate in the MLS is Back Tournament in Orlando. The competition, scheduled to begin Wednesday, appears set to progress in spite of the news.
FC Dallas have 10 players and a coach who have tested positive for coronavirus since arriving in Orlando. FCD head coach Luchi Gonzalez sounded incredibly downbeat in speaking about the challenge over the weekend, both in terms of trying to field a team and in working towards ensuring everyone impacted recovers and everyone else stays safe.
“Given the impact of the number of positive tests on the club’s ability to train and play competitive matches, we have made the decision to withdraw FC Dallas from the MLS is Back Tournament,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber in a league statement. “The health of everyone involved in our return to play has always been our top priority, and we will continue to make decisions consistent with that priority.”
This news has an immediate bearing on the San Jose Earthquakes, as they were scheduled to play FC Dallas on July 20 to wrap up the group stage. The immediate announcement did not indicate how things will change in competitive terms to adjust, we’ll just have to wait and see.
The bigger story is whether FC Dallas’ withdrawal is an isolated case or if more teams will follow. Also, is it even safe to play this whole tournament? We’re approaching 48 hours before the tourney kicks off, so I imagine there will be a lot more news coming in the interim. We’ll keep you posted on how such news will affect the Earthquakes.
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