Inside the MLS bubble, positive COVID tests bring tensions to the fore: ‘It rattles everyone a little bit’

Toronto FC captain Michael Bradley woke just before 6 a.m. on Sunday, ahead of a 9 a.m. kickoff against D.C. United, to find an email asking players to join a Zoom call with Major League Soccer.

Toronto was informed that a player in its squad had an inconclusive COVID-19 test result — Bradley said the group was told it was a positive result — and the Reds didn’t make the short trip from the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex for the team’s opening match in the MLS is Back Tournament. D.C. United, who were also informed they had a positive test the night before the match, did make the trip to the field before the league postponed the match.

“It throws you through a loop, no doubt,” Bradley said after the teams reconvened 24 hours later for the rescheduled match. “There’s just so much that is still unknown about this virus, right? The uncertainty of it all means that when there is a positive test in your group, it rattles everyone a little bit; there’s no two ways about it.”

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