Joao Cancelo of Manchester City withdraws from Euro 2020, Portugal replaced him with Diogo Dalot

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Joao Cancelo has tested positive for the dreaded coronavirus, hence, he would not be available for Portugal’s Euro 2020 opener against Hungary on Tuesday, June 15.

The 27-year-old Manchester City defender was expected to be involved in the Group F game but had to withdraw from the entire competition which kicked off on June 11.

Portuguese Football Federation (FPF) has announced that Joao Cancelo has been replaced by Manchester Unitedโ€™s right-back Diogo Dalot who spent a season on loan at AC Milan in the just concluded 2020-2021 season.

Joao Cancelo of Manchester City withdraws from Euro 2020, Portugal replaced him with Diogo Dalot
AC Milan loanee, Diogo Dalot.

Joao Cancelo has been a part of Portugal’s preparation for the European Championship before he had to be forced out of it due to a coronavirus infection. The test result came out two days before Portugal’s opener against Hungary.

Hence, Cancelo has left the camp of the Portuguese national team and has since gone into isolation. The 27-year-old defender can only be allowed to return to the public when he tests negative twice for the virus.

A statement from the Portuguese FA said Portugal’s opponent for Tuesday’s game, Hungary, has been informed about the protection procedures the national team took which UEFA has also approved.

One of such procedure involves the replacement of Joao Cancelo by AC Milan loanee, Diogo Dalot, who is expected to return to Manchester United ahead of the 2021-2022 season.

Joao Cancelo made 43 appearances for Manchester City in the just concluded 2020-2021 season in which he scored three goals and provided five assists. While Diogo Dalot made 34 appearances in all competitions for AC Milan in which he scored two goals and provided three assists.

“The AC Milan player will replace Joao Cancelo, who tested positive for Covid-19 following a quick test of the antigen carried out this Saturday by the health and performance unit of the FPF,” read a statement from the Portuguese FA.

“The Hungarian health authorities were immediately informed and the player – who is fine – was placed in isolation.

“The result of the test carried out by the health and performance unit was confirmed by an RT-PCR test carried out on Joao Cancelo also on Saturday and the result of which was known on Sunday morning.

“By the Covid-19 protocol defined by UEFA before the matches of Euro 2020, on Saturday all players and members of the entourage were subjected to RT-PCR tests.

“The results, except Joao Cancelo, were negative.

“The Hungarian health authorities have become aware of compliance with the protection procedures, fully respected according to the UEFA protocol, in a group that also has a high rate of vaccination coverage and have authorized the national team to respect the plan stipulated for the European Championship without any changes.”