Mboma tests positive for Covid-19 Eddie “Mboma” Nyatanga

Collin Matiza and Tadious Manyepo
ZIMBABWE National Soccer Supporters Association founding leader, Eddie “Mboma” Nyatanga, has tested positive for Covid-19.

The Harare businessman is now urging all those who came into contact with him to immediately get tested.

He said he underwent tests at the weekend, after feeling weak and generally unwell, and was advised yesterday he had tested positive for Covid-19.

He will now go into a mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Yesterday, medical practitioners were due to visit Nyatanga’s home and office premises, for disinfection as well as testing his family and business contacts.

“It is with a heavy heart that I come to you with not so bad news,’’ Nyatanga announced in a statement.

“I got tested for Covid-19 on Saturday and the results came out positive.

“The results have now been confirmed today (yesterday) by medical experts.

“I have seen my colleagues in sport, succumbing to this deadly pandemic, and I would like to urge my relatives, associates and dear friends to join me in prayers as I go into the mandatory 14-days quarantine.

“I have come into contact with different people and I urge them to all get tested.

“I am waiting for further instructions from the medical experts. I might be quarantined at my home or at a designated quarantine centre, depending on their recommendations.’’

He said the medical experts had told him they were due to visit his home yesterday to test his family members and disinfect the house.

“The medical team is due to visit my home to disinfect it and also to test those whom I have come into contact with here,’’ he said.

“I would like to urge those I have been in contact with in recent days to be tested and avoid getting into contact with other people.

“I’m now taking it one day at a time but I’m quite positive that I’ll completely make a fully recovery as I’m taking all the necessary precautions and I’m in constant touch with my doctor.”

Nyatanga said the virus appears to have spread all over the country and advised the authorities to consider door-to-door testing if the war against the pandemic was to be won.

“Now, this is the reality,’’ he said.

‘’My close friends, and all those in sport in general, and football in particular, can now understand that the virus is real.

“I have decided to reveal my status for the love of my friends and Zimbabweans.

“Everyone is at risk, as it stands.

“So, I am requesting that the authorities to conduct door-to-door tests, both at business premises and homes.

“I have been into contact with several people, including celebrities, who will all have to be traced.”

Nyatanga, who is currently the ZNSSA patron, said he remains positive and will adhere to all guidelines given to him by the health authorities.

Prominent personalities, across the globe, have tested positive to the disease.

Arsenal manager, Mikel Aterta, was one of the first high-profile football personalities to test positive but recovered to guide his team to their 14th FA Cup with a 2-1 win over Chelsea in the final at Wembley on Saturday.

Argentine international forward, Pablo Dybala, tested positive to the virus, at least, four times in six weeks in March with the Juventus star saying the illness left him struggling for breath.

His teammates, French World Cup winner, Blaise Matuide and Daniele Rugani, also tested positive for Covid-19.

All the three players have since recovered.

Dybala was this week named the Italian Serie A Player of the Year, beating his teammate, Cristiano Ronaldo, to the big award.

Yesterday, Nyatanga said football authorities should consider cancelling the 2020 season rather than try and gamble with a start next month.

“It’s now very clear that the eye of the coronavirus storm of passing through our communities,’’ said Nyatanga.

“A few months ago, we used to watch from a distance, telling each other that this had nothing to do with us but a concern for some countries far away from here.

“This has changed dramatically and what we do now will be decisive in helping us tame this monster.

“That is why I don’t think we can gamble with having the domestic football campaign being started, in these circumstances, because we are at the crossroads.

“We just have to deal with this storm and pray that when it passes we would still be standing so that we can start getting back to normal again.

“Football, right now, just like many of our sporting disciplines, don’t matter at all because these are games that we can still play next year while we can’t replace the lives we could lose if we drop our guard.’’

Already, the Zambia Football Association have revealed they will bring their Super League campaign to a premature ending because of challenges related to rising cases of Covid-19.

The South African football authorities, who are under pressure from sponsors, are set to restart their league campaign but the Government have made it clear they could step in, any time, to halt the show.

“This is subject — and this one is very important — to the plan they have submitted and all other protocols as outlined in the regulations and directions published by the department,’’ South African Health Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, said.

“Those plans should be adhered to, it’s not a fait accompli that people will just get into the field and play; they will play based on the plans which were submitted to the DOH (Department of Health).

“We reserve the right to halt any activity if we feel and think that those protocols and plans are not adhered to.’’

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