LAFC forward Diego Rossi has tested positive for COVID-19 while on international duty with Uruguay, the country’s soccer federation announced via Twitter on Wednesday.
Rossi, alongside teammate Brian Rodriguez, was called in for Uruguay’s recent CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers against Colombia and Brazil. He didn’t come off the bench in either game.
LAFC left back Diego Palacios and midfielder Jose Cifuentes also previously tested positive for COVID-19 while with Ecuador for their own World Cup qualifiers in South America and the club issued the following statement in response to the latest developments:
Upon receipt of the positive results, the players entered self-isolation in their respective countries and will remain isolated and follow their local restrictions and protocol prior to returning to Los Angeles. Additionally, forward Brian Rodriguez, who has been with the Uruguayan National Team, continues to test negative at this time. His return to Los Angeles as well as his status for LAFC’s playoff match against Seattle Sounders FC on Nov. 24 is still to be determined.
The potential absences of the three players who tested positive would represent a blow for LAFC who are getting set to face the Seattle Soundersnext Tuesday in a Western Conference Round One match at CenturyLink Field (10:30 pm ET | TV & streaming info).
The club initially feared it’d be without all four players regardless due to league protocols around COVID-19 quarantines and players returning from international duty. But earlier this week the league arranged for charter flights in order to have players available for the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs should they continue to test negative.
Rossi, 22, has been one of the best players in the league in 2020: He was named the AT&T MLS Young Player of the Year and also won the Golden Boot presented by Audi. He had 14 goals and four assists in 19 matches, so any absence would come as a blow for LAFC’s postseason aspirations.
Palacios (left back) and Cifuentes (midfield) have also emerged as regular starters for the club in recent months.