The players of the football club Slovan Bratislava were supposed to play on Wednesday the first qualifying round match for the Champions League on the Faroe Islands against the local champion Klaksvík. The match did not take place, however. In spite of the action on the field, sports fans in Slovakia are closely following the action and unexpected turns in the COVID-situation, local health authorities as well as the UEFA regulations surrounding the match.
Before the departure of Slovan for the Faroe Islands, two positive cases of coronavirus were found in the team: allegedly one player and one staff member. The team of Zlaté Moravce that Slovan played against in the domestic league only a few days ago had to go into mandatory quarantine. Meanwhile, Slovan put its found cases into isolation and left for the Faroe Islands. There, upon arrival, another positive case was found, this allegedly being the team's physical therapist.
"It was quite a long time frame between the first test that showed the first cases and the second test. It was easy, especially for such an international team as Slovan, to come in contact with infected people from the team as well as from outside," explained sports doctor Pavel Malovič in an interview with the sports section of RTVS. Meanwhile, the local health authorities in the Faroe Islands asked the whole Bratislava team to either go into a 14-day long quarantine or to travel back to Slovakia on the same plane. The Faroe Islands' head of the pandemic committee Michael Boolsen confirmed for RTVS that these players would not be allowed to play in the match that has been meanwhile postponed to Friday.
Therefore, on Thursday, Slovan Bratislava sent another 16 players from its B-team and juniors to play against Klaksvík on Friday. The team's president Ivan Kmotrík jr. publically thanked UEFA for postponing the match and thus allowing Slovan to play.
Source: Marek Arpáš, Martin Kaigl, RTVS