Australia coach Arnold fined for breaching COVID-19 rules

SYDNEY (AP) — Socceroos head coach Graham Arnold has been fined 25,000 Australian dollars ($18,500) for taking a walk on a Sydney beach while he was supposed to be self isolating after testing positive for COVID-19.

Football Australia issued a statement Monday to confirm Arnold had breached New South Wales state COVID-19 isolation protocols after a Sydney radio station reported that the veteran manager had been out walking, unmasked, with his wife and his dog at Narrabeen on the weekend.

The state’s rules stipulate a seven-day period of isolation following a positive test. In the FA statement, Arnold apologized for his “error of judgement.”

“I accept that I should not have left my home as per the New South Wales self-isolation protocols and will remain at my property until my self-isolation window concludes,” Arnold said. “I also accept the sanctions that come because of this error.”

Arnold tested positive for the coronavirus last Thursday but has taken subsequent tests that have returned negative. He still needs to return a negative result at the end of his isolation period to be allowed to rejoin the Socceroos ahead of Thursday’s crucial World Cup qualifier against Japan.

Football Australia CEO James Johnson said the money from the fine would be donated to the Red Cross.

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