Masry FC coach Tarek El-Ashri announced Thursday that his team's players need more time to fully recover from the COVID-19, confirming the team's situation is unstable at the moment after the number of the infected players was increased to 20 person.
On Sunday, the Port-Said based club announced that 12 players and four members of the technical staff tested positive for coronavirus after they took PCR tests during a training camp in Alexandria.
However, the number of infected players and staff members increased to 20 on Thursday after the Masry players underwent PCR tests ahead of their scheduled game against Ismaily in the Egyptian Premier League on Friday.
“Some of the PCR tests was negative and turned to positive. The increased numbers of infected is affecting us badly, we request Egyptian Football Association to give us more time to recover,” El-Ashri told local media.
Masry are the second team to confirm more than a dozen coronavirus cases after El-Entag El-Harby, who had their match against FC Masr rescheduled last week after 19 players and non-playing staff had tested positive.
After being given the green light by the government to resume the league competition, the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) ordered all clubs to run PCR tests ahead of every game.
The domestic competition restarted on Thursday with a match between Zamalek and Masry after a five-month hiatus due to the pandemic.
Masry is scheduled to face Ismaily on Friday in the 19th round of the Egyptian Premier League, but the EFA has not yet announce if the game will be played on time or will be postponed.
“The most important thing is the players and the staff’s sanity and safety, I guess everyone in the EFA will think so regardless playing the game on its time or not,” said El-Ashri.
“We are okay with continuing the current season, but there are compelling circumstances that we have to resolve first,” he added.
Almost three dozen coronavirus cases were discovered at several clubs, although all of the infected members only had mild symptoms.
Holders Ahly are leading the league table with 52 points after playing 18 matches, 17 points over second placed Pyramids FC, who played one game more.
Masry lie in tenth place with 20 points from 17 matches.
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