A big news has come in from the Portugal national team camp that full-back Joao Cancelo has tested positive for COVID-19 and is ruled out of UEFA Euro 2020. The absence of Cancelo will be a major blow for the Cristiano Ronaldo-led side. He was set to be one of the starters as he came in at the back of a highly successful domestic campaign with Manchester City.
Portugal will kick-start their campaign to defend their first title at Puskas Arena against Hungary on 15th June followed by Germany on the 19th in Munich. But their toughest test will unfold on the 24th when they will host World Champions and last edition’s runners up France.
Who will replace Cancelo?
U-21 international Diogo Dalot will join the Portuguese camp in Budapest to prepare for his debut at Euro 2020,” an official statement from the FPF reads. “The AC Milan player will replace Joao Cancelo, who tested positive for COVID-19 following a rapid antigen test carried out this Saturday by the FPF Health and Performance Unit.
Furthermore, the Portuguese national team released a press report. It said: “The Hungarian health authorities were immediately informed and the player – who is doing well – was placed in isolation. The result of the test carried out by USP was confirmed by an RT-PCR test carried out on Joao Cancelo also on Saturday and whose result was known on Sunday morning.
“In accordance with the COVID-19 protocol defined by UEFA before the Euro 2020 matches, all players and members of the entourage underwent RT-PCR tests on Saturday. The results, with the exception of Joao Cancelo, were negative.
“The Hungarian health authorities became aware of compliance with the protection procedures, fully respected according to the UEFA protocol, in a group that also has a high rate of vaccine coverage and authorised the National Team to comply with the stipulated plan for the European Championship without any changes.”
They say “someone’s loss is someone’s gain” and the scenario with Cancelo is no different. The player will not feature for his national team in the Euro 2020, as Diego Dalot has received his first ever national team call-up. The 22-year-old was on loan at AC Milan from Manchester United and had a pretty good loan spell with the Rossoneri. He also played a crucial role in Portugal U-21’s European Championship run to the finals where they lost to Germany.
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