AP NEWS

3 people at German club Cologne test positive for virus

May 1, 2020 GMT

COLOGNE, Germany (AP) — Three people at German soccer club Cologne have tested positive for the coronavirus in the latest blow to the Bundesliga’s hopes of resuming this month.

In a statement on Friday, Cologne didn’t name the people who tested positive, and didn’t say whether they were players.

None of the three displayed symptoms and they will all spend 14 days in isolation at home, the club said.

Tests have been carried out this week on players, coaches and other staff at Bundesliga clubs ahead of a planned return firstly to full team training, then to competition. Cologne said its players and staff were tested on Thursday.

German clubs are operating limited training schedules with players in small groups. If German soccer does return this month — which is subject to approval from federal and state politicians — it would almost certainly be weeks ahead of other major European leagues.

Tim Meyer, who chairs the German Football League’s taskforce on coronavirus, said the positive tests didn’t undermine the league’s approach.

“We now see in everyday life that our concept recognizes and reduces risks at an early stage,” he said in a statement on Cologne’s website.

“We will always be in close contact with the responsible health authorities and medical experts. We are convinced that with our concept, we can enable players to practice their profession with the best possible protection against infection.”

A player for another Bundesliga club, Paderborn, tested positive in March and there have also been cases in the second division.

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