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LAFC hoping to bypass quarantine by flying internationals home on charter

Diego Rossi and Brian Rodriguez may be available, after all.

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OLY-FBL-U23-BRA-URU Photo by JUAN BARRETO/AFP via Getty Images

UPDATE (Thursday): The Athletic has confirmed that neither Brian Rodriguez nor Xavier Arreaga are going to be eligible to play on Tuesday due to their exposure to other Covid-19 cases. It was not immediately clear if Gustav Svensson would be available, as his only known exposure potentially came more than a week ago when Sweden’s coach tested positive.

UPDATE (Wednesday): Diego Rossi has apparently tested positive for Covid-19, which would seemingly exclude him from participation in the playoff game. It would also seem to cast Brian Rodriguez’s participation into doubt even if these charters are allowed.

Los Angeles FC had long been hinting that they were hoping to have at least some of their internationals available for their Western Conference quarterfinal on Nov. 24 despite quarantine protocols. They may have found a way.

According to a report from ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle, MLS is hoping to arrange charters for various internationals in order to sidestep its own safety measures. LAFC is apparently planning to have both Diego Rossi and Brian Rodriguez available as a result. The report claims MLS consulted with infectious disease experts, who approved of the practice under the auspice that infections are most likely to occur during transit and not while the players are in the theoretically controlled environments of their national team bubbles.

Sounders GM Garth Lagerwey said the Sounders are also looking into bringing back Gustav Svensson and Xavier Arreaga via charter, but that their situations are complicated by both their national teams have positive tests. Notably, Rossi and Rodriguez were also potentially exposed to Covid-19 after it was revealed that Uruguay teammate Luis Suarez tested positive. Raúl Ruidíaz won’t be forced to quarantine due to being considered a “recovered person” after previously contracting Covid-19.

Even with those arrangements, LAFC is still likely to be somewhat shorthanded as both Diego Palacios and Jose Cifuentes tested positive for Covid-19 while with the Ecuador national team.

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