Arsenal has cancelled their pre-season tournament tour of the United States after multiple people in the club’s travelling party have tested positive for Covid-19.
🚨 EXCL: Arsenal pre-season tour to USA cancelled because of #COVID19 cases in #AFC camp. Small number of positives in travelling party, all asymptomatic. Club working through alternate plans as virus wreaks more havoc ahead of new PL season @TheAthleticUK https://t.co/vUi7ElyuYZ
— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) July 20, 2021
As reported by the Athletic’s David Ornstein, there are a small number of asymptomatic cases within the Arsenal camp as the club was preparing to travel to the US this week to continue their preparations for the upcoming 2021-22 Premier League campaign.
The Gunners were set to play Serie A champions Inter Milan, and one of fellow Premier League outfit Everton or Colombian side Millionarios FC in the Florida Cup to take place at Camping World Stadium.
Questions were already being asked before today’s cancellation in the days prior, with Inter considering pulling out of their participation in the pre-season tournament given the rise of the delta variant of Covid-19 that is currently ripping through all 50-states in the US.
Straight into the mix 💪 pic.twitter.com/d6WayDE7aC
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) July 19, 2021
Arsenal has already featured in two pre-season clashes thus far as Mikel Arteta looks to build on an impressive second-half of the 2020-21 season where the Gunners ended hostilities as one of the in-form sides post-boxing day. Their 2-1 loss to Hibernian and 2-2 draw with Steven Gerrard’s Rangers were hardly received well by large sections of the fanbase, but deals for Benfica’s Nuno Tavares and Anderlecht’s highly-touted Belgian U21 international Albert Sambi Lokonga (who was in Belgium’s camp at Euro 2020 but failed to feature) has brought fresh optimism.
Tavares has already featured for the Gunners during pre-season against Rangers and got himself amongst the goals with a tidy finish, while Lokonga was widely expected to feature in one or both of the clubs’ fixtures in Orlando.
Arsenal will now have to scramble to adjust their preparations as they are less than a month away from their Premier League opener against new boys Brentford at the Brentford Community Stadium on 13 August.