Nagoya – Nagoya Grampus defender Kazuya Miyahara has become the first player to test positive for the novel coronavirus since Japan's professional soccer league resumed its season late last month, the J. League first division team said Saturday.
The 24-year-old Miyahara, who played in 31 league matches last season, is the third Grampus player to be diagnosed with the virus. He came down with a 38-degree fever on Friday morning and took a polymerase chain reaction test, the team said.
The team said a total of 60 players and staff members have been tested in response to Miyahara's results and the team will have its facilities disinfected on Sunday. Miyahara is recovering at home.
Last month, former Japan forward Mu Kanazaki and Australian goalkeeper Mitch Langerak were diagnosed with the pneumonia-causing virus. They underwent treatment and have been playing this season.
The J. League restarted its virus-hit campaign on June 27 with the second and third divisions kicking off behind closed doors. The first-division J1 resumed on July 4 following a roughly four-month break.
The league began accepting a limited number of fans on July 10 in accordance with government guidelines. It said before the season that it will have players undergo PCR every two weeks.
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