Sampaoli and eight Atlético-MG players test positive for coronavirus

Atlético-MG announced yesterday that they were hit with nine cases in a Covid-19 outbreak in its football department. Among them are coach Jorge Sampaoli and defender Gabriel.
Jorge Sampaoli - Atlético-MG
© Atlético Mineiro

Both and the rest of the group, all members of the club’s football department – are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms, according to the current leader of the Brazilian Championship. 

A statement on the club’s website read: Clube Atlético Mineiro informs that, in the testing carried out this Monday (16), several members of the technical committee tested positive for Covid-19. 

Among the players, only defender Gabriel tested positive. 

All those who tested positive are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms and are already properly isolated. 

The exams were positive for the entire technical committee of Jorge Sampaoli, including the coach. 

All the affected players are already isolated and will not take part in the club’s next outing against Athletico-PR on Wednesday in Mineirão, for the Brazilian Championship. The game is a postponed match from the sixth round. 

In another massive blow, they are also out of the game against Ceará on Sunday in Fortaleza and Botafogo on the 25th. This is because the minimum period allowed by the protocol provided the affected parties don’t show symptoms is 10 days to return to training and games. 

The tests took place after the 2-1 victory over Corinthians last Saturday in São Paulo. It is the first time that the Rooster has a high number of positive cases in the same series of tests. 

Other recent cases 

Just last week, the Rooster had two more cases of Covid-19 among players of the club who did not get called up for international duty. Elsewhere, defensive midfielder Alan Franco tested positive for Covid-19 while on duty with the Ecuadorian national team and will only return to Brazil after returning a negative test. 

In addition to him, there is the 16-year-old attacker Sávio, who contracted the virus and returned from the Under-17 Team to quarantine in BH. 

What happens in the absence of Sampaoli? 

In addition to not having Sampaoli, Galo also lost the coach’s main assistant: Jorge Desio. It’s even worse that his right hand men were affected as well. Pablo Fernandez and Marcos Fernandez also tested positive. 

In the next games, Lucas Gonçalves or Éder Aleixo will be in charge of the reserve bench team. The two are part of Sampaoli’s backroom team. 

So far this term, Atlético-MG have been one of the consistent sides in the Brasileirão and currently top the pile having played only 20 games. However, their lead at the top is a fragile one as they boast only 38 points and that tally means only a mere six points separates the top eight teams. No doubt, one or two games can change the complexion of things. 

Full names of Atlético-MG players to have tested positive for covid-19 

Jorge Sampaoli (trainer) 

Gabriel Andreata (soccer manager) 

Jorge Desio (technical assistant) 

Pablo Fernandez (fitness trainer) 

Marcos Fernandez (fitness assistant) 

Gabriel (athlete) 

Domênico Bhering (communication director) 

Frederico Fortes (performance analyst) 

Danilo Minutti (goalkeeper coach)