LAKE MARY, Fla. - The Orlando Pride will withdraw its participation in the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup after some players and staff tested positive for COVID-19, the Club announced on Monday.
Those players and staff members who tested positive were all asymptomatic, according to health officials.
“This was obviously a difficult and disappointing outcome for our players, our staff, and fans; however, this is a decision that was made in order to protect the health of all involved in the Challenge Cup,” said Orlando Pride EVP Amanda Duffy.
“The decision goes far beyond just the positives, but also taking into consideration roommates or partners,” added Daryl Osbahr, M.D., team doctor for Orlando Pride and chief of sports medicine for Orlando Health.
Dr. Osbah said that protocols and timelines for contact tracing make it logistically impossible for the Club to participate in the Challenge Cup in Utah.
In accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and collaboration with the Club’s medical team at Orlando Health, the players and staff have received medical attention and will be isolated for at least 14 days.
Those who may have had close contact with the team members will continue to undergo additional COVID-19 testing. These team members did not have any direct interaction with any players or coaching staff from Orlando City SC or Orlando City B.
The Orlando Pride Training Ground at Sylvan Lake Park, located 44 miles from the Orlando City SC Training Ground, has also been closed and will undergo thorough cleaning and sterilization, the Pride said.