National football team hit by virus

Staff Correspondent | Published: 22:14, Aug 05,2020 | Updated: 01:08, Aug 06,2020


A group of Bangladesh national football team members are seen at the Bangladesh Football Federation premises on Wednesday. — BFF photo

Bangladesh national football team was hit by coronavirus when four of its players were found to be carrying the deadly virus and were barred from joining the national team’s camp on Wednesday.

Bashundhara Kings defender Bishwanath Ghosh tested positive with COVID-19 on Tuesday while Bangladesh Police FC strikers MS Bablu and Nazmul Islam Rasel and Uttar Baridhara striker Suman Reza tested positive after they gave their samples at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital on Wednesday.

‘After Bishwanath, three more players were found COVID-19 positive after their test at the BSMMU. So out of 12, eight players will check-in at the Sarah Resort in Gazipur tonight [Wednesday],’ BFF’s manager of competition committee Zaber Bin Taher Ansari told New Age.

The BFF made COVID-19 test mandatory for all 36 players who were called up to the preliminary squad and had asked a total of 12 players to report to the federation in the first phase on Wednesday.

The national team camp will begin on August 7 ahead of Bangladesh’s FIFA World Cup 2022 and AFC Asian Cup 2023 joint qualifiers in October-November.

Bishwanath, who was among the 12 players to report, informed the BFF about his coronavirus test result and BFF advised him to remain in isolation until he tests negative.

The 11 remaining players out of the 12 who reported to BFF on Wednesday gave their samples for testing at the BSMMU where the three were tested positive.

‘I got my test report last night [Tuesday night]. I tested positive along with my wife though there are no symptoms. I gave the sample on August 3,’ said Bishwanath.

‘I informed the BFF about my condition and they advised me to stay in isolation and to inform them if my situation gets critical,’ said the 21-year defender hailed from Tangail.

The players who had reported to BFF and given their samples for coronavirus testing were -- goalkeeper Pappu Hossain, defenders Monjurur Rahman Manik and Yeasin Arafat; midfielders Biplo Ahamed, Nazmul Islam Rasel and Manik Hossain Molla; and forwards Sumon Reza, Mohammad Abdullah, MS Bablu, Mahbubur Rahman and Foysal Ahmed Fahim.

The national team camp will start with 31 players as the team captain Jamal Bhuiyan and defender Tariq Raihan Kazi are at their respective homes in Denmark and Finland.

Kings’ also barred midfielders Masuk Mia Jonny, Atiqur Rahman Fahad and striker Matin Miah from joining camp due to their injuries and fitness.

BFF has called another 12 players to report today and seven on Thursday with their COVID-19 test reports. Then they will go for further COVID-19 tests under BFF’s management.

Want stories like this in your inbox?

Sign up to exclusive daily email