New York City FC announced in the leadup to their Saturday matchup against the Montreal Impact that one of their players had tested positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus). Despite the scare, the game went on as scheduled. Due to legal reasons, NYCFC are not permitted to disclose the identities of any players and/or staff who test positive.
When the team’s lineup was revealed prior to kickoff, Ismael Tajouri-Shradi’s name was absent from both the starting eleven and the team’s bench despite not being suspended or having sustained an injury in training. This immediately led to speculation that he had tested positive for the virus.
The Libyan winger has since confirmed that he is the player who has tested positive and that he plans on returning to action in the near future.
Tajouri-Shradi also provided a statement. It’s as follows:
“I wanted to let everyone know that I tested positive for COVID-19. I’ve been isolating and am taking all the necessary precautions. I’m feeling good and hopefully will have a speedy recovery so I can get back on the pitch and help the team soon. I want to thank everyone for the messages of support. It means a lot to me.”
The Libyan winger has appeared mostly off the bench this season. But with Alexandru Mitrita now gone, one would expect ITS to get more minutes in the immediate future.
Get well soon, Izzy! Hope to have you back soon!