Orlando Pride Voluntarily Withdraw From Challenge Cup Due To Positive COVID-19 Tests
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Orlando Pride will not take part in the NWSL Challenge Cup following positive coronavirus tests from six players and four staff members, the team announced today.
Orlando Pride Statement Regarding 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup Participation.
— Orlando Pride (@ORLPride) June 22, 2020
The tournament is expected to begin this weekend, June 11, in Utah.
“While we were all looking forward to seeing the Pride return to the field, we are unfortunately facing a decision that is necessary and in the best interest for the health of our players and staff. The decision goes far beyond just the positives, but also taking into consideration roommates or partners,” said Daryl Osbahr, M.D., team doctor for Orlando Pride and chief of sports medicine for Orlando Health in an official statement.
The Pride was scheduled to play the Red Stars on the opening day of the tournament, June 27, the Portland Thorns on July 1, North Carolina Courage on July 5 and Sky Blue on July 9.
☀️ & 🌑
— NWSL (@NWSL) June 18, 2020
The NWSL is yet to make an announcement regarding the future of the tournament. Furthermore, due to the withdrawal of Orlando Pride, the tournament will not need to be altered to eight teams, instead of the originally planned nine.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.
Tom Hackett is a Utah and Real Salt Lake Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the It’s Utah’s World Podcast (Utah Football themed) and The Lion’s Den Podcast (Real Salt Lake themed). Follow him on Twitter: @TomCantHackett.