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Juventus Women defender Cecilia Salvai tests positive for COVID-19

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She is the first player from Juve’s women’s team to test positive for the virus

AC Milan v Juventus - Women Serie A Photo by Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

As other Serie A Femminile clubs had found dealing with Italy’s second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Juventus Women had been relatively unscathed. Prior to the last international break, two staff members had tested positive, but no players had been impacted and things — as uneasy as they may be right now in the country — seemed relatively sound.

That was until Friday.

Juventus announced late Friday that defender Cecilia Salvai — who has been one of the team’s best players so far this early 2020-21 season — tested positive for COVID-19. As a result of Salvai’s positive test, the rest of the Juventus Women squad has gone into fiduciary isolation — most likely at the J Hotel — and will comply with the local health authority’s coronavirus protocol ahead of their return to the field in a matter of days.

The full statement from Juventus’ official website is as follows:

Juventus Football Club announces that, during the checks provided for by the protocol in force, a positive test for Covid-19 for the player, Cecilia Salvai emerged. In compliance with the regulations and the protocol, the team group enters fiduciary isolation this evening. This procedure will allow all subjects negative to the tests to carry out regular training and match activities, but will not allow contact with the outside of the group. The Club is in constant contact with the competent health authorities.

Salvai, one of Juventus Women’s mainstays since 2017, has helped fill the void left by captain Sara Gama’s injury over the course of the last six weeks. Salvai’s resurgence following knee surgery this season has helped the Juve women continue to win despite missing their most stable and calming presence in Gama, who has been out ever since early October with a muscle injury.

The news of Salvai’s positive test comes as the Piedmont region, where Turin is located, is one of the handful of regions in Italy that have essentially shutdown again as the country sees a major spike in COVID-19 cases over the course of the last four or six weeks.

Juventus also announced that it has shut down all youth sector activities due to the virus. The FIGC announced Friday that all primavera activities have been suspended until Dec. 3.

Salvai posted a reassuring message to Instagram shortly after the news of her positive coronavirus test was made positive.

Accept what you cannot change and change what is in your hands. Smile, smile, smile. Every now and then you cry. But above all, get away, because at this moment, getting away is the only way for someone to be there. Positive for Covid, but I’m fine, with heart and head always with you.

Juventus Women return from the lengthy international break — seriously, they last played on Oct. 16! — this Sunday when they face arguably Serie A Femminile’s biggest surprise team in Sassuolo.