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Malta Patches Together New Under-21 Squad Ahead Of Championship Qualifiers After Several Players Enter Quarantine

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The Malta Under-21s squad has undergone some major reworks ahead of its championship qualifier in Romania following a disruption in roster due to COVID-19.

So far, two players have tested positive for COVID-19 with a further eight being placed into quarantine after being identified as “high-risk contacts”. 

Another player was also told to self-quarantine after coming into close contact with a person who returned with a positive COVID-19 test result.

The disruption has meant that head coach Silvio Vella has had to make at least 11 roster changes, practically calling up a whole new squad, featuring several newcomers who will debut for the U-21 side tomorrow.

“It is to be noted that, apart from the player who tested positive yesterday, the rest of the squad and staff members returned negative results but several other players have been instructed to go into quarantine based on the contact tracing report and in the interest of public health and safety,” the Malta Football Association said.

“The COVID-19 issues are inevitably having an adverse effect on the Malta Under-21 squad’s preparations for Tuesday’s UEFA U-21 Championship qualifier away to Romania and the logistical arrangements.

Last week, the MFA announced that a player from the U-21 squad had tested positive for COVID-19 prior to their matchup against group rivals Denmark and had been withdrawn from the squad to self-isolate.

Just two days ago, the MFA also announced that another player had to be withdrawn from the squad after testing positive, bringing the total number of positive cases to two. 

The newly-fashion squad has landed in Romania where they will play in the UEFA Under-21 Championship qualifier tomorrow in Giurgiu. 

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