Chile-Zambia friendly called off due to Covid-19 cases

Chile’s second international friendly match against Zambia was called off on Tuesday after the visitors were put into quarantine by local health authorities due to a spate of Covid-19 cases.

The South Americans suffered a 2-1 defeat against the Olympic Games-bound Copper Queens after strikes from Barbara Banda and Racheal Nachula helped the Africans to a comeback win last Thursday.

The pre-Olympic preparation match in Santiago was in doubt from the moment Chilean health officials declared their decision regarding the Zambian travelling party.

Four Zambia players tested positive for the coronavirus on Tuesday, after performing the antigen tests before cases were retested and again came out positive.

ANFP Medical Commission general coordinator Casar Kalazich said in a statement,” As dictated by the sanitary protocols of the ANFP Medical Commission, we have carried out the test for Covid-19 for the Zambian women’s team.

“In antigen testing, a test validated by Chilean soccer, they have yielded four positive results.

“Therefore, and due to the high risk it represents for this match, we have decided to cancel it,” added Kalazich, who is also the Chilean Society of Occupational Medicine president.

Following advice from health authorities, the Chilean Football Federation confirmed the match scheduled to kick off 6:30 pm local time (22:30 GMT) at the Santiago National Stadium would not go ahead.

Chile are preparing for an African/South American Olympic playoff two-legged contest against Cameroon, with the first leg scheduled for February 18 in Yaounde and second leg six days later in Santiago.

Zambia, on the other hand, are gearing up for a maiden Olympic appearance in Tokyo next year following an incredible automatic qualification at the expense of Cameroon in March this year.


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