Gonzalo Higuain tests COVID-19 positive as Inter Miami prepare for play-off: Report
- Three Inter Miami players have tested positive for COVID-19,
- Miami are due to play Nashville FC in the MLS playoffs
- Los Angeles FC confirmed four players had tested positive earlier this week
Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain was among the three Inter Miami players that tested positive for the coronavirus on Friday, dealing a major blow to the side's preparations for the MLS play-off debut.
AFP cited the Miami Herald to report that the former Argentina international and his brother Federico and defender Leandro Gonzalez Pirez had been sidelined for Friday's encounter against Nashville SC.
Two other players from Miami's reserve team had also tested positive for the infection.
Miami did not confirm the identities of the players, however, saying that a total of three players were not "medically cleared" to play against Nashville.
Miami, who are co-owned by former England and Manchester United star David Beckham, must win Friday's one-off game with Nashville to advance to the opening round of the MLS Cup play-offs.
The Miami outbreak is the latest setback to the start of the MLS postseason. Earlier this week, Los Angeles FC confirmed four players, including forwards Diego Rossi and Brian Rodriguez, had tested positive for COVID-19.
Rossi and Rodriguez's cases came with the duo on World Cup qualifying duty with Uruguay in Montevideo.
Two other players, Ecuador internationals Diego Palacios and Jose Cifuentes, also tested positive on international duty.
The cases come just days before LAFC face the Seattle Sounders next Tuesday in their opening postseason game.
Unlike the NBA, whose play-offs were held in a bubble with teams based at a single location in Orlando, Major League Soccer's postseason is taking place with teams playing at their home venues throughout the United States.
The playoffs come as the United States faces an escalating Covid-19 crisis, with cases skyrocketing across the country.
New cases of Covid-19 have averaged around 167,400 per day this week while the daily death toll has topped 1,400.