Portugal’s Euro 2020 hopes have suffered a knock after Manchester City full-back Joao Cancelo was ruled out of the tournament with a positive COVID-19 result.
Cancelo, 27, had been aiming to build upon an excellent season at club level by playing a strong role in A Selecao’s defence of the title they won back in 2016, but he will now be replaced by Manchester United full-back Diogo Dalot.
A statement from the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF) read:
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Under-21 international Diogo Dalot will join the National Team’s delegation in Budapest to prepare for his debut at Euro 2020.
‘The AC Milan player will replace Joao Cancelo, who tested positive for Covid-19 following a rapid antigen test carried out this Saturday by the FPF Health and Performance Unit.
"The Hungarian health authorities were immediately informed and the player – who is doing well – was placed in isolation."
The statement continued: "In accordance with the Covid-19 protocol defined by UEFA before the Euro 2020 matches, all players and members of the entourage underwent RT-PCR tests on Saturday. The results, with the exception of Joao Cancelo, were negative."
The news means Dalot, who spent last season on-loan at AC Milan, will continue a busy summer of international football after being part of the squad for Portugal’s defeat to Germany in the U21 European Championships last week.
Portugal’s first game of Euro 2020 begins on Tuesday when they face Hungary.
Elsewhere, another Premier League defender has been ruled out of further involvement at this summer’s tournament.
Leicester City’s Timothy Castagne suffered a double fracture in his eye-socket in Belgium’s 3-0 victory over Russia on Saturday.
The 25-year-old Castagne was forced to come off after a nasty collision with Daler Kuzyaev in the first half and Belgium boss, Roberto Martinez confirmed that it would be his last appearance.
"Really bad news, sad to see Timothy Castagne is going to be out of the tournament," Martinez said following his team's win.
"He's had images taken, he's got a double fracture, and now we'll take the necessary treatment."

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