FRISCO, Texas – Following MLS’s decision to withdraw FC Dallas from the MLS Is Back tournament due to a number of positive COVID-19 results, head coach Luchi Gonzalez joined a media conference call to address his team’s unfortunate predicament.
“It is a very difficult situation,” Luchi began. “Of course, we had objectives to be here, to compete and win. We had a lot of faith in how we prepared in Dallas. The players trained very well in Dallas and worked hard to get to this tournament. They were prepared, focused, united and ready to compete and represent our community and our club, and well, it got difficult from the day we arrived. Difficult because when we arrived, we began to see consecutive days of positive results in the tests that now have us in this situation where we are not in the tournament.”
As of now, FC Dallas is one of two teams with numerous confirmed positive results (Nashville SC has five confirmed cases). So, with all the safety protocols put in place, why did the team suffer from such a widespread outbreak? For Luchi, it was pure chance as he feels the club followed all the necessary health regulations.
“No one intended or did anything maliciously to get FC Dallas infected with Coronavirus or a player to get Coronavirus,” he said. “We have responsibilities, we have laws, and as a club we have to have responsibilities. As a coach, I have a lot of faith that we did things the right way. A lot of faith with doctors, the coaches, the club that we followed the protocols that the league gave us. The league is also trying to do the best they can. We are all doing the best we can.”
Although FC Dallas won’t compete in the tournament, Luchi expressed his desire for the tournament to carry on despite the hardships he and his team have undergone since arriving in Orlando.
“I wish all the best for all the teams competing,” he concluded. “I want the tournament to continue, and to have a champion and congratulations in advance to that champion. I know that the league wants to have a taste of soccer and competition and we have to take risks. In life you can’t do anything incredible and great without sacrifices and without risk. No one is perfect but we have to have faith and try to do our best. And that's our mindset at the moment.”