Marseille forced to postpone Ligue 1 opener against Saint-Etienne over new COVID-19 cases

Marseille forced to postpone Ligue 1 opener against Saint-Etienne over new COVID-19 cases

- Marseille's French League opening match for the 2020-21 season has been postponed

- The club confirmed that four of their players tested positive for COVID-19

- Their game against Saint-Etienne has now been pushed to a later date to be confirmed by the authorities

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French League club Marseille have confirmed that four of their players have tested positive to the deadly coronavirus.

Les Olympiens were scheduled to kick-off the 2020-21 season on Friday, August 21 against Saint-Etienne at their Stade Velodrome stadium.

However, the latest update has forced the fixture to be moved after some results of the tests they did earlier in the week came out positive.

SunSport reports that the club embarked on another round of testing on Monday, August 17 but none of the results came back infected.

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The publication revealed that three COVID-19 cases were found this week (Sunday), while Jordan Amavi had tested positive since last week.

Marseille forced to postpone Ligue 1 opener against Saint-Etienne over new COVID-19 cases

Marseille boss Andreas Villas-Boas protecting himself against COVID-19 - Getty Images
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La Provence reports that ex-Crystal Palace goalkeeper Steve Mandanda, Maxime Lopez, and Valentin Rongier are the three new cases.

A source close to the team reportedly said: "Everyone is fine, they would all be asymptomatic apparently."

And both Marseille and Saint-Etienne have confirmed that their game has been called off on and it will now be played at a later date.

Rules guiding the Ligue de Football Professionnel's state that if a team has more than three players or backroom staff test positive over the course of eight days than a game can be postponed.

Marseille canceled their friendly game against Stuttgart last week following Amavi tested positive Covid-19 result.

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The Ligue 1 was billed to restart after the 2019-20 season was ended abruptly in March over ravaging coronavirus.

Protocol at the time stated that professional sports in France could not return before September but the government has since given the green light for the top flight to return this weekend.

Fellow Ligue 1 side Nimes Olympique also announced on Tuesday morning that they have suspicions over two positive cases within their ranks. earlier reported that Barcelona top star Samuel Umtiti has been told to self-isolate after the result of his coronavirus test came back positive.

The Frenchman was not part of the Catalan club that got demolished by Bayern Munich in their quarterfinal clash at the Estadio da Luz.

Umtiti, who has been out injured was said to have taken the test at the club's training ground earlier in the week. Though he was infected with the virus, but he is asymptomatic.

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