Spezia announces more coronavirus cases, tally up to 8

BOLZANO, Italy (AP) — Spezia’s turbulent week went from bad to worse as it announced on Saturday that six more players have contracted the coronavirus.

That is in addition to the player who tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday.

Spezia started preseason training at the beginning of the week but the American-owned Italian club has had to suspend all sporting activities and the whole group will remain in self-isolation.

A staff member is also infected.

The news comes a day after Spezia was hit with a two-year transfer ban by FIFA because the previous owners broke transfer rules years before the sale of the team when recruiting young players from Africa.

Spezia said the allegations date from 2013 to 2018, and the ongoing FIFA investigation was “not properly disclosed” when the Platek family bought the club in February during its first season in the top league.

The club pledged to appeal against the ban on registering new players — with the ban starting in January 2022 — and paying FIFA a fine of 500,000 Swiss francs ($544,000).

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